As the youngest of 15 children, Idell was raised by her father and siblings after her mother died of cancer at the age of 47. Idell got wrapped up in the wrong crowd, and found herself in the vicious cycle of drugs and incarceration.

In 2011, Idell was hit with hardship after hardship. After breaking her leg and not receiving proper care, it got badly infected and had to be amputated. There were no handicapped accessible placements for Idell so she stayed in the prison’s medical ward for 16 months. Then, two of her siblings passed away that same year. It was a wake-up call for Idell, who decided that she was ready to get her life back on track, a path that started in September 2012 when she came to N Street Village.

“When I came to N Street Village, everybody loved me so I wasn’t scared to take care of myself.”

Idell entered N Street Village as a resident of our Recovery Housing program.

“It wasn’t easy…I had a lot of anger to deal with.”

After a long struggle, Idell graduated from Recovery House and found a place at Erna’s House, where she lives today. With the help of N Street Village, her family and her church, Idell is now well grounded. “Religion and recovery are the most important things to me now.”

Idell manages the inspiration board at Erna’s House – she hopes that the quotes, passages and sayings she displays will help someone in their time of need.

She is still looking for the daughter that she had in 1983 while she was under the influence of drugs –she hopes to be able to reconnect with her someday soon.