My name is Gabrielle, and I am an incest and sex trafficking survivor. After battling eight years of sexual abuse between the ages of nine and seventeen and suffering two miscarriages of fetuses conceived from rape, I fled my father and my abusive household to attend Central Maine Community College. There I was conferred an Associate’s Degree in Liberal Arts with a 4.0GPA while working twenty hours per week in a federally approved work study program, primarily as a math and science tutor.
Miraculously, I was accepted to Smith College, a premier Women’s College in Massachusetts. Although I was generously offered a significant amount of financial aid in the form of scholarships, grants, and student loans covering nearly all of my tuition, housing, and healthcare, other miscellaneous expenses such as textbooks ($500 per semester+), transportation to and from Smith ($200 per semester+), housing during recesses, and basic dorm amenities (laundry, housing dues, living and school supplies etc.) were not.
If I cannot scrape together the funds, I cannot attend. Without a car or a dependable place to live, I will be forced to consider returning to my abusive household.
As it is, I am bouncing between relatives for the summer and therefore cannot find steady work. I am using my measly reserve of earnings as well as SNAP benefits to feed myself; there is nothing extra. I cannot pay for treatment for my disfigured spine, a result of my abuse, nor can I pay for therapy for my Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, much less afford mounting textbook costs.
If you could please help a sister dig herself out of the wretched hole she came from, I would be eternally grateful.
Thank you so much for reading and have a fabulous day.