Tag Archives: lost girl

Does She Have a Chance?

I was walking by the Salvation Army Hostel on Monday and saw a young woman looking at a map printed out from a computer.  “Can you help me?”  she asked.  “I’m not a city girl.  I feel like a lost tourist.” 

She wanted to find the Salvation Army Thrift Shop in St. Boniface.  I told her she could walk with me and once we got to my street I’d show her the direction to go.  I told her I volunteered at a Mennonite Thrift Shop. 

“I’m a Mennonite,” she said.  She told me her name.  Her first name was Biblical and her surname definitely Mennonite. “Where are you from?” I asked.  She named my hometown and as we talked she told me about the schools there she had attended.  I had attended all three myself and taught at one of them. When I asked about her parents she described her father with an expletive and said she never wanted to see him again.  Her Mom had left her Dad and moved to a distant Manitoba town. 

I asked her what she was going to buy at the Thrift Shop. “Clothes,” she said.  “I just got out of prison and all I have are the clothes on my back.”  I asked how she’d landed up in jail. “I assaulted someone,” she told me and then quickly added,  “you don’t have to worry, I am not a violent person.  I was attacked and just defended myself.” 

We kept talking till we reached my street.  I found out she’d been kicked out of high school, had no one in the city she knew, and had no money.  There was a limited amount of time she could stay at the Salvation Army. “I’ll have to find a way to make Winnipeg my home,”  she said. 

When we reached my street I pointed her in the direction of St. Boniface, gave her some money to buy clothes, wished her well and waved good-bye.  I can’t stop thinking about her. I know there is probably lots more to her story than she told me. But………what will happen to her?  What chance does she have?  

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