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Abilene Hope Haven offers many who are homeless a second chance

Published On: Mar 15 2013 09:45:49 PM CDT   Updated On: Mar 16 2013 12:39:53 AM CDT
ABILENE, Texas -

Keri Osborne said her life was very different before she came to Abilene Hope Haven.

"I’m a recovering addict.  My husband and I both are and our life was pretty much in shambles before we got here," Osborne said.

Osborne lost everything because of her addiction, including her two children

"So many times you hear people say, ‘if you love your children you would stop using, if you want your children back you'll stop using,’ and that's not really the case. We used even more to cover up the hurt," said Osborne. 

Finally, Osborne decided to get help and entered a rehab program. After getting sober she moved into Hope Haven with her husband.

"When we came here we got a new lease on life. We got our children back, we rebuilt our lives, we're completely different now. We're moving on successfully and you can see the difference inside and out," said Osborne. 

Hope Haven helps people who have lost their home for various reasons.

"People come from all walks of life, unfortunately, especially with the recession. There is no cookie cutter homelessness," said Alana Jeter, executive director of Abilene Hope Haven.

The shelter provides food, housing and transportation for those who qualify for up to one year.

"Having the ability to stay somewhere rent free for long term, up to a year, really provides people a chance," said Jeter. 

Friday, Osborne visited her old apartment at the facility and was reminded how far she's come since the day she got there.

"Not only am I grateful for the opportunities that it provided me and my family, but I’m also grateful for the lifelong friendships that I built here," said Osborne.

Osborne is now in nursing school and working full time.

Saturday there is a St. Patty’s Day 8k run benefiting Hope Haven. It will take place at Redbud Park at 8 a.m. Registration is $30 and registration begins at the YMCA at 7 am.