My name is Regina. I am from Ghana. This is the art that I created during the Bold Faces Art Project.
I made this beautiful African lady to remind me that I was beautiful once.
I came here for all of the opportunities in America. I met a man, fell in love and got married seven years ago. As soon as our first child was born, the abuse started and it never stopped. Since I found the YWCA, I am sure that my beauty will come out again.
The first year of our marriage was okay. But then my husband began to isolate me. It started with verbal abuse then punching, choking and threatening me with a knife. I was not allowed to leave the house. He took house keys, car keys and our only telephone when he went to work.
One day last December, I asked a neighbor to call the police for me. I had no idea there were places like the YWCA to help me but that is where the police took me and my children, now ages 7, 6, and 16 months.
The YWCA gave me a roof over my head and safety for me and my children. I came to shelter with no money and no job and they were able to give me food and clothing, even bus passes. Whatever I needed they helped me find it. They connected me with legal help for my order of protection and child support.
After some time in the Weaver Domestic Violence Shelter I was accepted into the YWCA Transitional Housing Program. My children and I live in an apartment. I am taking classes in the YWCA GED program. I meet regularly with my YWCA case manager. I am working hard to find a job. I want to work very much.
Thank you YWCA, for helping me find the beauty inside me that I had forgotten!