Each year the YWCA of El Paso helps people in our community including women who have suffered from domestic violence.
One year ago, a woman named Janette, left Odessa with her two month old baby in hand.
She was in a physically and emotionally abusive relationship for almost two years.
“It had been abusive throughout I just thought he would change once the baby came,” Janette said. Janette was not able to reveal her last name for safety reasons.
She told ABC-7 the tipping point was when her ex-boyfriend tried threatened to throw the baby’s car seat at her while the baby was lying right next to her.
“That day I actually took off with just a suitcase that was pretty much full of diapers.”
Janette bought a bus ticket to El Paso with the little money that she had. “It was a really scary ride,” Janette said. “You think ‘how am I going to do this sitting here with a baby in my arms and nothing really.”
Once in El Paso, Janette, who’s a native of Sunland Park, New Mexico, moved from shelter to shelter with her baby girl until she found a temporary home at the YWCA’s Sara McKnight Transitional Living Center.
The center provides women like Janette with a secure housing environment and teaches them self-sufficiency.
“They give us a lot of help with anything we need pretty much,” Janette said.
Janette said the YWCA helped her go back to school and worked with her to attain a scholarship. She’s now working towards the next step in her and her daughter’s future.
“She’s such a happy baby she’s always laughing she’s always smiling,” Janette said.
“Obviously I’m her role model, for her to see me this little, I know she doesn’t understand, but as she grows older she’ll start to see more and just say ‘oh well my mom, she’s doing something I can do it too.”
Janette cried tears of joy as she reminisced on the life she once lived, to the empowered life she’s now living with the help from the YWCA.
“The fact that every accomplishment that I’ve made it makes me feel even more confident which they’ve helped me get here you know.”
Funds raised during YWCA’s “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” event with help women like Janette that are living at the center.
ABC-7 will be live from the event October 17 at San Jacinto Plaza in Downtown El Paso.
To learn more about the event, click here.