Donye has lived in Madison for six years, and has a two-year-old daughter. He loves music and playing sports. Most of his jobs have been working in warehouses locally in Madison, but he had to take time off recently after injuring his hands. “I’m a big dude. I work with my hands. I do manual labor and usually do warehouse work. But now I can’t work like I used to because of my accident. And when it’s cold, I have ailments due to the accident. I’m 24 but my body feels like it’s 87. I have to persevere, fight through the pain. But I didn’t die!” Donye says he doesn’t like staying at home, so tries to fill his time volunteering and helping out in the community until he can return to work full time.
In the meantime, Donye says funds from the program have provided financial stability for him to weather this time when he can’t work as much as before. And that translates to financial stability for his daughter. “Everything I earn goes towards my child. [With MFF], it’s one less bill I have to pay. Diapers, wipes. I already got food stamps but that runs out pretty fast. Definitely feels like I don’t have to do anything too drastic. A lot of the individuals in our community that we live in, we take drastic measures because it’s a drastic situation.” Donye is using the funds to cover basic needs for him and his daughter, while also saving up for a deposit on a new apartment, and hopefully soon will be able to buy a car. Without MFF, Donye’s accident might have sent him into a financial crisis. Instead, he is able to support himself during recovery and focus on spending more time with his daughter. Donye jokes, “She’s definitely keeping me young ‘cause I can’t keep up with her!”