Meet Ori-Oma Saulters
“Everybody is broken when they come here...”
Ori-Oma looks back on her childhood as a time of abuse and neglect. When she was 6, her mother remarried to a man who was physically abusive.
“My stepfather was very problematic… I believe he’d been abused as a child, and he perpetuated it with me.”
To make matters even worse, Ori-Oma’s her own mother was “psychologically and emotionally abusive. At one point, my sister overheard her talking about how she was poisoning the food we were eating.”
Ori-Oma moved out of the house the day she graduated from high school. She put all her energy into work, but soon realized she had carried her problems with her. Her downward spiral began when she was laid off from her job and started making bad decisions.
“I ended up moving in with an ex-boyfriend and it soon became an abusive relationship. Then I tried staying with a relative, but she kicked me out and kept all my belongings, my money… everything. That’s when I started living as a homeless person… and I lived that way for five years.”
The turning point came when another homeless person she met told Ori-Oma about City Union Mission.
“The people here were so helpful, kind and respectful. They weren’t like any other shelter I’d been to because they’re Christian – that made a huge difference in the way they treat people.”
“Your own family may not be there for you, but at the Mission you have brothers and sisters in Christ who genuinely care.”
In our New Life Program, Ori-Oma began healing from the trauma she experienced throughout her life.
“There’s a lot of counseling, so you get a chance to see the underlying causes of who you are and how you define your identity. I got saved at one of the chapel services and now I have a thirst for knowledge of the Lord.”
Today, Ori-Oma has graduated from our program and is optimistic about her future. She plans to go back to school to complete her bachelor’s degree and dreams of starting her own business in cyber security. No matter where the Lord leads her, she plans to keep her focus on loving God and serving others.
Ori-Oma is thankful for the kindness and compassion of caring neighbors like you – and how you have given her hope for the future. “Since coming to the Mission I am at peace. I have an understanding of what I want in life… how to be obedient to God and have a relationship with Jesus.”