Shana Curry lives with her two children, aged 8 and 5, in a cramped two bedroom apartment on Bridgeport’s East Side. The yard behind the building is often flooded so it is difficult for the children to play outside. Inside, the landlord is slow to make repairs so there are holes in the walls.
Shana has strived to make a better life for her family for many years, seeking a medical career where she could use her compassionate nature to help people. Although she was unable to land a job with a Medical Technician certification, despite the promises made by the school, she kept searching until she found a CNA training program with The Jewish Home for the Aged with guaranteed employment at graduation. She has now been employed there for 4½ years and was honored as 2012 CNA of the Year by the Alzheimer’s Association for her job performance.
Her children are Shana’s pride and joy. Her son John is in 2nd grade and is the little man of the family. He loves spending time with his mom and helping her out. He has battled epilepsy since a severe attack at the age of 2 and Shana remains on alert for the various triggers that could bring on a seizure. Shana’s daughter Armoni just started kindergarten this fall and loves coloring, dolls, and Dora the Explorer. She does her best to keep up with everything her big brother does too!
Being accepted as a future Habitat homeowner is a day Shana will never forget. She had been excited to apply after hearing about Habitat for Humanity from a co-worker but couldn’t believe she might be able to make her dreams a reality. She has always hoped that her children might grow up in a better environment than she had, with more financial stability and security. Now that they know their new address, 16 Laurel Court, Shana makes a point of driving by everyday on the way home with her kids to take a picture.
Completing the 500 hours of volunteer work required for Shana’s sweat equity has been a challenge with her work schedule, no other adults to help, and her surgery in May following an injury at work. Although she has every other weekend off, she always works an additional shift then to make ends meet. Shana was happy to develop a plan this summer where she can keep making progress on her sweat equity by working at our ReStore for a few hours each weekday before picking up her children from her sister’s home where they go after school. With their home nearing completion, Shana almost can’t believe her dream is finally coming true. She will finally have a backyard so her kids can play outside and a home they can call their own. As Shana says, “We’ll have our own foundation for the future and I can start working on my next goal, going to school to become a nurse.”