Anonymous donors pay rent for woman on the verge of eviction

Courtney McCormick calls it “a Christmas miracle”

Anonymous donors pay rent for woman on the verge of eviction

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - A woman who was on the verge of eviction from her apartment complex has a home for the holidays and beyond.

Our community stepped up to help Courtney McCormick. Good Samaritans paid her rent through January and others offered her help with her resume and leads on potential jobs.

“It’s a miracle people were able to help,” she said “I didn’t expect that.”

We first introduced you to McCormick last week.

She lost her job as a server during the pandemic and struggled to find work. She fell behind on her rent.

“I didn’t do anything wrong; I tried my hardest and some people fall down,” she said.

Through working with the Good Shepherd Center, a Wilmington non-profit organization that helps homeless people and keeps those on the margins in their homes, McCormick was approved for the state’s Housing Opportunities and Prevention of Evictions program or HOPE.

But McCormick said her apartment complex, Hawthorne at Smith Creek, wouldn’t sign on to the landlord agreement.

When we called to find out why, managers refused to comment.

McCormick says she was embarrassed to share her hardship with the community but she’s glad she did.

“I wanted people to listen to my story,” she said. “I had nowhere else to turn.”

After seeing our story, Good Samaritans, who want to remain anonymous, stepped up to help her.

Now, her rent is paid through the end of January.

“Thank you so much,” McCormick said. “It was so heartfelt. It was the best Christmas gift I’ve ever, ever had.”

Now that she doesn’t have to worry about losing her home, she can focus on finding work.

She already received help with her resume through a viewer who reached out and others helped with several leads on jobs.

“There was nothing under the Christmas tree that could’ve amounted to the fact that the community helped me,” she said. “This is the best Christmas ever. I’m not going to lose my home. I don’t have to go out on the streets. It’s amazing.

According to Good Shepherd, there are many people in our community who are in the same situation as McCormick was.

Of the 2,000 applications for eviction prevention programs, the Good Shepherd estimates about 500 applicants have landlords who would not sign onto the agreement.

Their future remains unclear.

As for McCormick, she hopes to pay the kindness from the community forward once she is on her feet again.

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