This I believe

Tori - Pacific, Wa 98047, Washington
Entered on November 12, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

I believe that deep down every person has some sense of decency.

From a young age my life has been filled with hardship. I have had two house fires that completely consumed everything I have owned. The last one was about a year ago on August 3rd 2007. On this date my brother and mother sustained burns on their hands and feet. They had to go to the hospital and were in pain for weeks afterward. Having everything you have ever known suddenly vanish means you are basically left to the mercy of what strangers give you. In the space of minutes, I was suddenly homeless. The only reason that we survived this was because of agencies like the Red Cross and St. Vincent DePaul. But we still had to live on the site of the burned down house for almost six months. There was no heat, no running water and very sporadic electricity. We had a generator but it ran on gas and sometimes it wouldn’t work. But finally we moved in with friends. These were people who we hadn’t seen for years. We liked them then but when we were living there we found out that they were drug addicts. Even though they really didn’t have a nice life they still found the compassion to help us with our problems.

During this time, our friends and neighbors tried to help us salvage what we could from the ruins of our house. It is because of them that we still have some memories and our sanity. Then, my step-dad lost his job. We had no money and no place to go but back to our destroyed home. The only income we had was from my mother selling things that she got from thrift stores on eBay. But eventually, because of the Red Cross setting up a fund to go to our family, we were able to rent a small little house. It is all because of the decency of people that we live there and not still living in a cold garage.

We found out later the cause of the fire. When we had our house rebuild after the first fire, we noticed that there was a few problems with it. We thought it was all small things like, missing doorknobs and no calking around the bath tubs. It turns out that the sprinkler system that we had put in didn’t work. But above that, the electrical was messed up. It turned out that it was the contractors and other builder’s faults. They had gotten most of the faulty parts from junkyards. Even though they made bad choices I don’t believe that that means that they weren’t decent deep down.