CONVERSE-Enough! Tonya Williams-Parrish and her husband want out of their home for the sake of their special needs children. But dreams cost money. The couple is more than $15,000 insufficient in that department. It hasn't stopped them from tossing faith into the wind.
"It's perfect for this family," she says.
The 42-year-old is a Special Education aide for the Judson Independent School District. John, her husband, works as a floor tech at the San Antonio Military Medical Center. The noise of children who have needs in their two-story remains invariant.
"I'll fight for one like I would fight for the rest," says Williams-Parrish.
In October 2010, the mother of two increased her family by taking in six special needs children. John married her with all eight kids in place.
"Has he seen the kids," her family asked. "All of them?"
They were raising Zach, Daniel, Jacob, Charity, Levi, Yussif, Naomi, and Isaac. The siblings range in age from 19 to three years old.
The Parrish's rental home has maintenance problems. The kitchen ceiling has fallen in. They have issues with the water in the bathroom. Add that the mental and physical challenges of children.
Levi and Yussif are Iraqi refugees. Their mother became suicidal trying to cope with her culture and children. She signed her parental rights over to the Parishes. The boys suffer from cerebral palsy. Yussif, 9, is blind too. Navigating up their stairs could result in injury.
"He is still intellectually delayed, so, he doesn't think, 'take a step. Take a step,'" she says. " Or scoot scoot. It's a safety hazard for him to go tumbling down."
Charity has cerebral palsy too. Isaac has shaken baby syndrome. His mental capacity is never expected to reach normal. Their parents thought about a mobile home they consider a God send.
It's a single-story five bedroom, open spaced mobile home with no carpet where they don't have to worry about allergies and such.
"My husband and mama said I don't want you to do a mobile home," says the San Antonio native."I said we have to do whatever we can do to get our kids in a safer place."
As Williams-Parish sought to move her children to a new home, she became sick. In fact, she had to have for surgery degenerative disk disease. The education assistant couldn't even write. On medical leave, her payments on her student loan fell behind.
When the couple tried to secure the mobile home of their dreams, their credit suffered because Williams-Parrish's medical forbearance wasn't timely. They needed $18,000 plus land for their new home.
The $5300 in government assistance for the special needs children couldn't get them over the hump.
"$5300 seems like a lot. But when you spread it across 10 people," she says. "You spread it across wipes and diapers and food and things like that. It doesn't give you a lot to put back for."
At the suggestion of a friend, Williams-Parrish set up a Gofundme page. They've raised $1100 in the quest for home sweet home.
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