SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) – In this Christmas season, hundreds of families across the metro Detroit area are calling a homeless shelter home.

Two weeks before the holiday, 23-year-old Cindy, who sat with her three young children inside the South Oakland Shelter in Southfield, said she won’t be among those families.

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Cindy arrived at SOS Oct. 1. The program requires participants to move each week to a new participating church for shelter.

“I had to be up and back here at the Southfield office with the kids each day by 8 a.m. Then I had to follow the leads for employment and housing that my social worker had set out for me,” she told WWJ Newsradio 950’s Marie Osborne.

“That meant I left the SOS office by 10 a.m.,” said Cindy — and that’s not been easy with three children in tow.

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Cindy found herself homeless for the first time after experiencing domestic violence. She said there were many days when she was deep in despair, often crying. Her young daughter would sometimes ask,”When are we going home?”

Fast forward to Dec. 20: After weeks of hard work with the assistance of SOS, Cindy secured a good job and an apartment. She will not be in a homeless shelter on Christmas morning. She and her children will wake up in their own home.

Cindy will continue to receive support through SOS for a year so she can remain on the road to self-sufficiency.

“When my own family was unable to help me, strangers came forward to help me. I still can’t get over that. I believe they are angels,” she said.

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Learn more about South Oakland Homeless Shelter at this link.