Valesia’s alcoholic dad physically and sexually abused her and her sister, but no one believed her.
“I tried to tell anyone who would listen,” she said. “My dad bribed my sister, who denied it. In school, I was bullied because I would not speak. My dad had threatened me if I did.”
Controlled by silence and fear, 9-year-old Valesia drank whiskey and smoked marijuana to sleep through the violence at home and to get through school.
“I tried to talk to aunts and uncles about what had happened, but they said no one would believe me if I told. Teachers and officials at school labeled me a walking time bomb.”
Carrying the weight of her abusive childhood alone, Valesia drifted through each day. She tried to escape her life with stronger drugs, alcohol and attempted suicides into her 20s. She hoped she would not wake up to reality.
“I got into an abusive relationship that broke me down to my lowest point. I lost myself and did not know who I was anymore.
“My daughter came home from elementary school and said, ‘Mommy, are you okay? I want you to get up off the couch and talk to someone.’ I did … and landed here at Star of Hope with my two little kids and the clothes on our backs … my self esteem broken … my heart bruised … my spirit and body torn.”
As she rested at Star of Hope, Valesia’s faith in God grew. She said, “I knew everything happened for a reason … I realized God has a way of sitting you down and putting in your face the things you have been praying for and asking Him to do.”
“I had been asking GOD to put me in a situation
where I can go back to school.”
— God was listening.
“I had been asking to find better housing.”
— God was guiding.
“I had been wanting to deal with my past,
and get closure, and start rebuilding me.”
— God was answering.
“With the Personal Development program and the beautiful people we interacted with, I was able to learn some things about myself and strengthen my faith again.”
“God said to me, ‘I am delivering you from your pain and struggle, one hurdle at a time. I am preparing to move you forward and prosper you, so take what you can from these men and women of God and use it in your everyday walk.’”
Valesia has graduated from her Star of Hope recovery program and can now tell her story … it is a victorious one!
“I would like to thank the donors of Star of Hope, because without them, none of this would be possible.”
“Thank you, Jesus! You heard me!”