Yrene’s story

In the fall of 2010, Yrene Nivar felt a lump in her right breast. Tests revealed cancer. Yrene's first thought was: "I have to see my son graduate college this spring." Months of grueling cancer treatment followed, during which Yrene had to put her own job and college plans on hold. But by May, her cancer had responded so well to treatment that she was able to attend her son's graduation—the fulfillment of a lifelong dream. "I was so proud!" She says.

But her troubles weren't over. She had been forced to take a leave from her job, and the disability payments just didn't cover her expenses. She had fallen far behind on her rent.  Just as Yrene was regaining her health, she found herself on the verge of eviction. "I didn't know what to do," says Yrene.

She was referred to the Community Service Society by a partner agency.  Our Center for Benefits and Services team stepped in with a cash grant, and helped her apply for further assistance. Yrene was able to stay in her home.

Now cancer free, Yrene is back at work. She has also resumed her own college studies, and has big plans: "My dream is to finish my education and work in human services, to help people navigate the health care system. I want people to know that help is there."