She’s Guided by Faith and Fortitude
“St. Patrick Center gave me the feeling that I could start my life over again, that I could get on the ladder and climb back up.”
Ellie grew up in North St. Louis County, graduated from high school and went to college. “I had a
beautiful childhood.” A chronic mental health condition surfaced later in life, compounded by grief over the loss of loved ones, and became her daily struggle.
When Ellie’s job at a law firm was eliminated, it was difficult to afford health insurance and needed
medications. “I was just surviving—food and the bare necessities.” She was evicted, and though her church family helped, homelessness crept in. “I lived in my car on a grocery store parking lot.”
Later, while staying at a local shelter, the St. Louis Winter Outreach team referred Ellie to St. Patrick
Center and our Women’s Night Program. “I immediately found safety, fellowship and rest. Plus, it felt great to improve my personal hygiene and get a haircut!” Case managers helped Ellie find part-time work and the other women in the program offered advice about housing options. “Everyone was so nice and helped me achieve my goals.”
Ellie has been housed for a few years now and regularly sees a psychiatrist to help maintain her stability. She works as a security officer and is very involved with her church. “My life is good, steady and on track.” Ellie is writing a book about how the Holy Spirit works in our lives and hopes to marry one day.