My name is Valerie McCormack.
When I came to Community Action in 2008 I was in a deep depression from a lifetime of abuse from my mother as well as my mother’s boyfriend. I was never taught how important getting an education was. I was kicked out of school at the age of 13, as well as my own home by my mother. I had very low self –esteem.
As a parent I lost my five-month-old son to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), and almost immediately afterwards I lost my eight-year-old daughter to cancer. I started using drugs to escape my pain from their deaths.
I am happy to say I have been clean eleven years and I have been able to turn my life around for the better. I want to be a good example to my two children so I have been attending Skagit Valley College since 2017, and I have passed all my classes with A’s. Utilizing Community Action’s shelter services was critical in helping me get back on track.
Being a single mom and living off a very low income is a constant struggle to make ends meet. I want to be able to provide for my family, and by getting an education, I will be able to get a good paying job to do so.
I have found healing in all my volunteer work across the community, and I am committed to continuing to make a difference. Community Action
has been a source of hope for me all along the way. When they covered the funeral expenses after my daughter’s death, I learned firsthand what care, support and hope looks and feels like.
Thank you, Valerie, for sharing your story. (Pictured above is Valerie with her two children Angel Montes and Jasmine Montes.)