The homeless family of six that Voice of San Diego profiled earlier this summer now has a Mission Valley apartment to call home.
Our Lisa Halverstadt and contributor Peggy Peattie in June documented the Raschke family’s struggles as they tried to secure housing in San Diego’s punishing housing market and care for their four children despite the many travails they faced. The family’s story spurred City Council President Sean Elo-Rivera to invite Natalie Raschke to speak to the City Council about their experience and why the city’s existing safe parking lots for people living in vehicles didn’t work for them. The City Council then voted to expand the hours at one of its safe lots, explore potential safe lot locations in every City Council district and establish family-friendly zones at each site.
Last week, the family moved into a three-bedroom apartment.
Natalie Raschke said she’s been grateful for the outpouring of support her family received after Voice’s story published. Yet she also said the paperwork she had to complete to get into the apartment was overwhelming and questioned how someone with a disability or who might be flustered by various agencies’ requirements could manage it.
But her children were focused on celebrating. Lulu, 4, danced on the carpet in the bedroom she will share with her sister. Alo, 8, and Lulu took turns jumping on a mattress in what will be the boys’ room. Estrella, 12, shared her new home on a video chat with friends. Ahanu, 15, took it all in before hurrying off with his dad and brother to collect their football gear and head to practice.