Listen to a conversation with a woman navigating mental health challenges from the streets of Springfield

Via Peters

Below is a Q and A between KSMU’s Jennifer Moore and Springfield resident Kaily Madrid, who is currently homeless. This interview transcript has been lighted edited for clarity.

Q: Tell me about your efforts to find housing.

A: You’ve just got to be strong and keep your boundaries intact—and work with caseworkers that are willing to bring you applications and stuff. So I have good workers that brought me applications for housing and stuff because I’ve been out here homeless and it’s been difficult.

Q: You had a caseworker come to you here at the drop-in center?

A: Yes. I meet with her three times a week to get everything done.

Q: And do you know what organization she’s with?

A: She’s through One Door—the One Door organization [administered by the Community Partnership of the Ozarks].

Q: How’s that going?

A: They usually say housing usually takes a while, you know, through the whole process and everything. So it’s just like a waiting list and everything.

Q: Have they given you a time?

A: No, they haven’t.

Q: So what are some of the obstacles that you face in getting your own place?

A: The obstacles I face are like the red flags that are stopping us from getting our place. Like being out here, trying financially, and employment. [Trying] to, you know, get our foot in that door to be successful and obtain employment in the correct way and to obtain housing.

Q: And you said that you are looking for a job?

A: Yes. I did have a job, but I had a doctor’s appointment and they ended up letting me go.

Q: What type of job was that?

A: It was housekeeping.

Q: So how would having your own place change your life?

A: Having my own place would help me be the woman I set out to be, to be successful and very independent. To help me to better myself, you know, after the loss of my husband in 2020. Like, I’ve been homeless and I lost myself bad. So I just need help and stability. And doing that will help me find out who I am again and be the woman I am.

Q: I’m sorry to hear you lost your husband.

A: He had a heart attack. And then right away, they didn’t let me see his body. They just threw me in a psych ward right away. I still deal with grief and all that.

Q: So would you say that mental health is still one of the barriers that prevents you from getting back on your feet?

A: Yeah, because that’s one of my boundaries they set up for me through my case management plan: it’s to identify my diagnosis. Because I have a very serious stress disorder. They brought me up to Biopolar 2, Schizophrenia, and Borderline Personality Disorder. And all this happened ever since after he was gone.

Q: So what kind of treatment are you able to assess for your mental health conditions?

A: Well, they have like psych doctors and all that. And like they’re trying to get me to this other group, you know, for like grief class.

Q: How is that going? And how often do you go, and where?

A: Well, I just barely started my treatment plan the other day, so I haven’t really got to touch base with the program yet.

Q: How long have you been homeless?

A: Well, since 2020 when I lost my husband. It’s like, I became homeless ever since then. And I’ve been seeking employment. And then I had employment then I had to quit one job due to health issues. I ended up in the hospital. I’ve been on two heart monitors, and I had blood clots in my lungs, which are gone now. I was on two heart monitors, so they’re kind of like watching and stuff, you know?

Q: And where do you spend your nights?

A: Sometimes I go to the women’s shelter Safe to Sleep, which is an amazing place. But ever since I stepped out of my boundaries into this relationship with this guy finally—which is still kind of hard for me, you know, we still have issues and stuff—but we sleep on the streets at times.

Q: So as far as housing goes, you are on a list through One Door, which has a social worker who comes to help you.

A: Yes, my social worker comes and helps me. And I wait for feedback and for my disability and all that too, because I have medical disability.

Q: But you don’t know how long that will be?

A: No. It’s just like time period. I’ve been waiting for it.


https://www.ksmu.org/show/sense-of-community/2022-03-31/soc-housing-jennifer-interviews-a-homeless-resident-wed-pm-part-6

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