A small loan with a big impact

Beatrice is originally from Florida but moved to Southwest Virginia to get away from severe weather in her home state. She has experienced a lot of loss in her personal life – her husband passed away after she moved to the area and then her son. Without her husband and son, Beatrice’s closest family is miles away in the western United States.

Beatrice was living with a good friend who became abusive, leaving her unhoused for the first time in her life. After an argument with her friend she was told that she had “three days to get out of the house.”

At the time, Beatrice was employed by a local restaurant in Washington County. With nowhere to go, she lived in the restaurant parking lot for a while. After the restaurant went out of business, Beatrice was out of both work and a home.

A woman sits on a bench outside of an office.

Beatrice knew she needed to do something soon to improve her situation. She immediately put an application into a local grocery store, Food City. The store manager “took a chance on me,” said Beatrice. He hired her to work in their florist department. Faith in Action, a local Abingdon non-profit, helped Beatrice find temporary housing, and gave her some food and a gas voucher so that she could get to work and back.

Even with this help, Beatrice still had some transportation hurdles to overcome to get to her new job. She needed to get new tires for her car, a handicap sticker, and to make sure her car insurance and inspection was up to date. That’s when she turned to People Incorporated for a small personal loan. She used the loan to get everything she needed for her car, making sure it was safe and reliable enough to get to her to and from her new job.

For Beatrice, the small loan was a big relief. She worried a lot about renewing her car insurance and inspection before the loan and was afraid of getting pulled over. “It would have made my life even worse,” said Beatrice. “I don’t think I would have lived through that, honestly.”

A woman smiles with her two dogs.

Life is now looking up for Beatrice. She is happy with her new job and thankful for her employment with Food City. She tries to give back to her neighbors in need by helping them get to the store and other places they need to go. Soon, she hopes to move into a new apartment with her two emotional support dogs, who have helped her through a lot over the last few years.

“People Incorporated, Faith in Action, and Food City all gave me the steps I needed to help myself in life,” said Beatrice. “If I can return the favor someday, I will.”

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