Real Stories, Real Lives: Leslie | Actors Fund

Real Stories, Real Lives: Leslie

November 15, 2016 | Services & ProgramsClient Stories

Leslie would do anything and everything for her children. Her four sons are the joys of her life, but recently, a sudden family crisis meant she had to make a painful choice—her work or the well-being of her family.

Last October, one of her sons attempted suicide as a result of a life-long battle with bi-polar disorder. He nearly lost his life, and much of his time in ICU was touch and go. Fortunately, he survived.

As she searched for the best mental and physical care for her son, Leslie made a difficult decision: she gave up everything in New York and moved away to be near relatives. She risked it all—leaving behind a career as a front of house porter, and leaving the city that she loved.

In time, her son became stronger and the whole family longed to return to New York. The arts was the only industry and career she had known. It was time to rebuild her life and start all over again. With almost no savings after months of medical bills, she confides, “All I knew was I had to find a way to provide for my children.”

Fortunately, Leslie contacted The Actors Fund. Our social workers provided emergency financial aid and jumped into action to locate an affordable apartment for her family. She also received emotional support to cope with the stress and upheaval she was facing.

Today, Leslie’s back working at a Broadway theater. And her positive attitude shines through: “I exist as a normal person again. I have a home. I have a foundation to support my life and my sons’ lives. There is life after all. The Actors Fund gave me hope.”

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