Christmas is still not until next week, but already a family in need has found a little holiday cheer.
The Frank and Stacie Hill family has been chosen as beneficiaries of this year’s Transcript-Bulletin Benefit Fund. The family of six has been without a real roof over their heads since they moved from Connecticut to Utah in October 2012. The couple and their four children have been living in a camping trailer—even in sub-zero temperatures—until they were evicted from a lot they were parked on last week.
From there, the Tooele Valley Resource Center has helped them get a motel room, but the temporary situation still worried the family, in dire straights since Frank was laid off from his full-time job a year ago.
On Wednesday, however, applications the family submitted months ago to Tooele County Housing Authority were finally processed and they were able to move into an apartment. Frank said he credits the change in their circumstances to the publicity about their situation in the Transcript-Bulletin.
“It’s awesome and it’s very overwhelming to be standing in this place. It’s beautiful,” he said. “I feel like everyone’s gone out there and pushed for these things to be expedited for us.”
Of course, the Hills’ troubles are far from over. Frank is still looking for a full-time job to support his wife and their four children—and to keep rent on the new place, as well as a security deposit and other necessities for moving into an apartment. And with the snow, Frank can’t work at his weather-dependent part-time job installing siding.
Since the family donated most of their belongings before moving to Utah in fall 2012, and have been living in a camping trailer ever since, they have no furniture to put in the new apartment—not even a crib for 6-month-old Marielle. Stacie said the family does not even have a garbage can.
To assist the Hill family in their predicament, donations to the annual benefit fund are still being accepted through Monday, Dec. 23 at the Transcript-Bulletin’s business office at 58 N. Main Street, Tooele. Donations can also be mailed to: Transcript-Bulletin Benefit Fund, P.O. Box 390, Tooele, Utah 84074.
Stacie said the children all like craft items, art supplies, and clothing. Maliah, 4, is soaking up writing and learning like a sponge, too, Stacie said.
Donations can come in the form of money or material goods. For contributors who want to help with clothing for the four children, their sizes are: Size 10-12 for a 11-year-old girl; size 10 for a 10-year-old boy; size 5T for Maliah; and size 12 months for Marielle. The shoe sizes for the older three children are 3 for the 11-year-old girl; 2 for Marcus; and 10T for the 4-year-old girl.
Frank said any help would be greatly appreciated, but everything else is icing on the cake compared to the good fortune they’ve found this week.
“We got our biggest Christmas gift now,” he said. “This is big.”