by Dan Pearce, Abbotsford News
Darla Rasmussen has finally found a place to call home.
The official opening of the Christine Lamb Residence, a 41-unit supportive housing development for women and children at risk of homelessness at 3096 Clearbrook Rd., was held on May 11.
Rasmussen was the final speaker at the opening.
“I didn’t prepare anything, I’m a heart speaker,” she said. “If you had known me a year ago, I was just hanging on. I was a broken spirit.”
Rasmussen moved into the newly built housing on March 5.
“Through this residence, I have been filled with so much love and encouragement by the staff and the other women that live here.”
Prior to moving in, Rasmussen didn’t have a stable residence. She couch surfed for several months and, more recently, lived in Agassiz with a family in their basement.
“They fed me, they took care of me, they loved me, but it wasn’t a suitable place to have my children,” Rasmussen said.
She began to feel hopeless and wasn’t sure if anything would come together for her. However, since finding her new home, things have turned around for Rasmussen.
“It was really empowering, but really scary at the same time,” she said. “I’ve never lived on my own before, and since I’ve come here, I’ve really had to come into my own as a woman and a mother.”
Rasmussen currently cares for her two boys, Sedar and Phox, on weekends and is in the process of regaining full custody. She also found a full-time job working for Xyolhemeylh Child and Family Services.
“My passion is all about prevention and helping people through transition in their life,” she said.
Aside from working, she volunteers and goes to school.
Rasmussen is grateful for the opportunity to improve her life and she is already making progress.
“Through this experience, I see myself in a different way. I have more confidence, I’m starting to recognize the gifts that I have, and as some would say, I’m starting to sparkle.”
For more information, visit wrsfv.ca.