Enjoy a few stories about our Stewards.
MICHAEL was attending New York University on a Dean’s scholarship, working hard at his studies, when piercing and unrelenting dental pain made it impossible for him to study. Even the painkillers he was taking constantly weren’t helping anymore. Meanwhile, his family was unable to help, as his mother and younger children in the family were enrolled in a transitional housing program for homeless families. Born and raised in Ethiopia, Michael had never been able to afford proper dental care, and now had developed into a serious chronic problem. When it became clear that Michael’s college success was at risk, his mother’s case manager approached the GAH. With GAH funding, Michael’s dental work was done; he went on to complete his degree and graduated as winner of one of NYU’s Outstanding Graduate Award. He is now pursuing his M.S. degree in chemical engineering.
RAHMATULLAH, a husband and father of four, is a refugee from Iran, where his family suffered considerable persecution. He has embraced a new life in America, working multiple jobs in dedication to giving his family a better life. He had never been to a dentist until coming to the US, after his teeth had deteriorated to a point of crisis, causing immense pain and jeopardizing his ability to support his family. With GAH funding and the discounted services provided through a Good Samaritan, Rahmatullah was able to complete multiple dental procedures that otherwise would have been unthinkable for him to afford.
CALVIN was on pretrial release and working hard to create stability in his life. He was enrolled in an automotive repair training program and doing well. Though motivated and determined to complete the program so he could have gainful employment, he was starting to have difficulties. He approached his case manager to get help for the one thing that stood between him and success - a pair of eyeglasses. She contacted the GAH. With a GAH award, Calvin got his first eye exam and a pair of glasses and went on to complete his program successfully.
HELEN, mother of a six-year-old boy, is a survivor of domestic violence and was in a program for homeless families, where she was thriving and recovering well from the trauma. She is a housekeeper and has hopes to create her own housekeeping business. She has learned English, passing the ESOL exams, and was taking adult education classes. Her ability to perform at her best was hampered by incessant dental pain. She needed extensive dental work, including a root canal, with no hope of affording this herself. With an award from the GAH combined with a contribution from a Good Samaritan, Helen got the dental services she needed. She has a renewed confidence about her ability to build a safe, free and independent life to raise her son.