Cases 39-41: Mother's death uproots three children and their grandmother

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100 Neediest

Drawing by Jingyuan Huang, of Thomas Jefferson School.

CASE 39 • A heart-wrenching loss has left Ms. D and her three grandchildren reeling. Ms. D’s daughter died a violent death. Ms. D brought the children to live with her, only to be told by her landlord that there were too many people in the home and they had to move. Ms. D works part time and is struggling to meet the needs of her expanded household. The family is also struggling emotionally with their loss. Any assistance with Christmas gifts and monthly expenses would be appreciated. The three children, a 15-year-old girl, and boys ages 12 and 13, would enjoy board games and clothing, including winter coats, gloves and boots. Ms. D could use pots and pans and towels.

CASE 40 • When Ms. L was diagnosed with breast cancer in June, she had to leave the job as a certified nursing assistant she’d held for 13 years. She is often too tired and sick from chemotherapy to keep up with the demands of being the single parent of a 7-year-old boy. She has no income and is at least $3,000 behind in rent. She is facing eviction and the disconnection of electrical service, although the landlord is waiting to see if she can come up with the money. Ms. L would like assistance with rent and groceries and a few toys for her son.

CASE 41 • Ms. G, 49, is trying to create a home for her teenage son and daughter, but severe arthritis challenges her mobility, and she can’t work. Recently homeless for a time, the three doubled up with seven extended family members in a two-bedroom apartment. They now have their own place. Ms. G’s son is recovering from a gunshot wound to the mouth and struggles to eat . The family seeks stability.

Case profiles by Cathy Hensley, Robert Patrick and Jesse Bogan of the Post-Dispatch.

To give

The tradition of 100 Neediest Cases campaign dates to 1922, when civic leaders formed the Christmas Bureau. The Post-Dispatch has partnered with the program for more than five decades, renaming it 100 Neediest Cases in 1954.

HOW IT WORKS • Social service agencies, working through the United Way, identify thousands of needy families. Volunteers then select 100 cases to be profiled in the newspaper to raise awareness.

WAYS TO GIVE

ADOPT A CASE • For highest-need cases, the program supplies donors with a list of a family's needs. Donors are asked to meet at least one of the stated needs and provide at least one present for each person in the family. Everything goes directly to the family, through a social worker.

DONATE • Monetary gifts to the 100 Neediest Cases general fund are used to help the more than 4,000 cases, and go directly to the families.

FUNDRAISE • Encourage friends, family and others to join you in helping. Set up a fundraising page for your adopted family or the program overall, and have an even bigger impact.

TO HELP • Call 314-421-6060 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays, visit 100neediestcases.org, or mail a check payable to "100 Neediest Cases" (no cash) to P.O. Box 955925, St. Louis, Mo. 63195.

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