LIMA — The lack of reliable transportation is having a snowball effect on a Lima family with a young daughter in need of frequent medical attention.
Gloria, her boyfriend and her young daughter live on Gloria’s monthly Social Security disability check, and that already tight financial situation was further complicated recently when she lost her monthly food stamp allotment after failing to find transportation to re-apply in person for benefits.
“We’re getting by on my disability until we can find some reliable transportation so my boyfriend can get a job,” Gloria said. “He’s looking at a lot of temp agencies right now, and he’s also checking into a Job and Family Services program where you can sign up for free cab rides to and from work.
“My check is paying the rent, but we’re struggling with day-to-day expenses like household items and food. But our biggest issue is transportation and getting to medical appointments,” she said.
Earlier this year, Gloria’s young daughter, who will turn 4 years old in January, suffered a broken arm. Far from a typical fracture, it was a life-threatening event. Doctors said only one in five cases worldwide match the severity of the injuries the young girl suffered.
“Her arm was shattered; the artery was nearly ruptured and she had to have emergency surgery,” Gloria said. “But she’s a strong little girl.”
While the youngster’s cast has now been removed, more trips to the doctor will be required in the coming months.
“Our biggest issue is the lack of a vehicle. That’s our biggest problem … getting to her appointments,” Gloria said.
While the family has many needs, Gloria is thinking primarily of her daughter as Christmas approaches.
“I want a merry Christmas for her. She definitely needs clothes — size 5T or the next size up — and she loves Minnie Mouse and Scooby Doo,” Gloria said. “Clothes, toys, shampoo, a toothbrush … any of that would be appreciated.”
The family’s refrigerator also stopped working recently, and food is in short supply.