Amy grew up Amish in Holmes County, Ohio among rolling green hills and black buggies. Like most Amish women, she married, had children (a total of six), and spent her days caring for her family and home.

However, Amy’s life was anything but idyllic. In a home regularly filled with the scent of fresh baked bread, Amy and her children endured difficult situations.

When Amy was referred to a local Love INC by a local partner church three years ago, she’d lost everything but her youngest two children and, to keep them, she needed help.

Amy faced many challenges.

Amy had never worked outside the home or managed money. To keep her two youngest out of foster care, she needed to figure out how to do both, fast. “From the start, I was willing to do whatever it took to get healthy, in a safe environment,” said Amy. “I didn’t want a handout; I needed help.”

To help, Love INC of Greater Holmes County, placed the little family of three (formally eight) into a Love INC transitional housing program, Homes of Hope. With secure housing in place, Love INC enrolled Amy into their transformational ministry program and assigned her to a budget coach. Shortly thereafter, Amy began her first transformational ministry class, Faith & Finances, at Martin’s Creek Mennonite church.

Faith & Finances not only impacted my finances, but truly our relational needs too,” says Amy. “I dearly love Kathy, my Faith & Finances coach. She is more than a mom or a friend. I went from being three months behind in rent and utilities to having a savings. It’s beyond my comprehension, really.”

Amy’s children benefited from the childcare program while Amy attended class. “Steve and Michele (volunteers) have given so much to my children with weekly childcare. Steve gets down on the floor and arm wrestles with [my son]. That has been huge for us! Knowing they are here for me means the world.”

“When life seemed too difficult and dark, I continued not only because I was granted unconditional love, without the pressure of having to measure up, but because my children needed to be with these people.”