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An Ex-homeless Woman Starts A Nonprofit Organization To Encourage Others

A woman founds a nonprofit organization to aid those battling mental illness. An ex-homeless woman starts a nonprofit organization to encourage others.

The holidays can be difficult for those who struggle with mental health conditions like depression, but a woman from Riverside County is hoping that by sharing her story, others will be motivated to seek the help they require.

She benefited from her family and therapy to transform from being a homeless person to a prosperous business owner.

Crystal Smith is engaged in her favorite activity. People's hair is being colored, cut, and styled by her.

Smith said, "Blessed, I'd say blessed is the word.

Smith experienced a severe depression in November 2020, but she has struggled with it periodically since she was a teenager.

Smith claims that after having her final two children, her depression got worse.

Smith stated, "I just wanted to stay in bed all day and every day." "I would feed the kids and do the bare minimum to take care of them, but I just wanted to be in bed."

Smith had to quit her job because her depression had gotten so bad. She required intensive therapy, which required her to stay in a special home.

"You have to find a great support system and people who are going to uplift you, people who are going to be there for you whether you are at your lowest but who can be vulnerable with," they would always tell me at the house, Smith recalled.

Her church and her husband Dillon, who quit his job to concentrate on Crystal's recovery while caring for their six kids, aged three to eleven, would be part of that support system.

Because I drove a truck, I didn't want to go on the road and return home to discover that my wife had passed away, Dillion said.

The family had to temporarily stay in a motel due to their meager income before eventually saving up enough cash to purchase a camper.

They camped out across Riverside County for more than a year and a half.

She started feeling better at that time, according to Dillon, and she even started cutting hair for campers.

Then, Dillon recalled, "one of her friends said, 'I'm not working three days a week if you want to jump into my salon suite during these three days, you're more than welcome to,'" he continued.

Crystal and Dillon opened the Smith Hair Salon in Temecula in June after accumulating enough cash.

Additionally, they established "Crown of Glory Ministries," a nonprofit.

Helping those who are experiencing what we did two years ago, Dillon said.

by offering them guidance on how to handle a mental health crisis and, more importantly, by instilling in them the belief that things can improve with the help of a strong support network and effective therapy.

"Therapy is not fast so go in no matter how long it takes and just don't give up," Crystal said.