Marlene was raised in a good family by two hardworking migrant parents. She grew up with one younger sister. They provided for all of her and her sister’s material needs, but emotionally they were absent it left Marlene feeling alone and isolated. The family attended a Pentecostal church and went to all its functions so Marlene knew of God from an early age but did not have a relationship with him. Because of her feelings of isolation, Marlene had a hard time making friends, and she started skipping school in the 6th grade to avoid being bullied and teased by her peers.
She turned to a gang as her way of feeling accepted and to have a place to belong. It was there that she was introduced to Methamphetamines which made her a false sense of confidence, and relief in a way that she hadn’t experienced before. Marlene got involved with a boy from school named Matthew and soon after had her first daughter at 16. This, unfortunately, did not stop her from using after the pregnancy.
She began a cycle of going in and out of jail and being on and off the streets. Her breaking point came when she found herself homeless, pregnant, and using meth. After being arrested for identity theft, she had her second child in jail. Marlene was hopeless, angry and confused and she had no clue how her life got so bad so fast.
She found herself in jail crying out to God, “I know you’re there, but I don’t have time for you.” She wasn’t ready to submit but God had other plans for her. Shortly after this, she entered the Hoving Home.
Since coming to the home, Marlene has discovered her new identity in Christ and she is removing all the lies and labels that the world has put on her. Her relationship with her family is stronger than it has ever been. Marlene has a burden to help youth with their self-confidence and to help with anti-bullying. She now has a new level of confidence in Christ!