Where Our Roots Ran Deep

By Chenelle Weaver, Direct of Outreach and Special Initiatives, Banner Lake Club, Inc.

Garrett Sr., Jody Ann, and their four kids are overjoyed and grateful to have found an affordable, permanent home in the city where they both grew up …. the city of Hobe Sound.

Garrett Sr. and Jody Ann, natives of Hobe Sound, faced the daunting challenge of raising their four children while grappling with the ever-increasing costs of rent and the never-ending demands of maintaining a house they could never truly call "home." Determined to provide security for their young family, they tirelessly put in long hours searching for a place where they could both raise their children and make a living. Eventually, they discovered a townhouse in Stuart, FL, equipped with three bedrooms and two bathrooms, which seemed like the perfect fit. Little did they know that this humble townhouse would become not only their place of residence, but also the hub of their children's education and their source of employment during the unexpected COVID-19 pandemic. However, even after the pandemic had passed, the escalating monthly rent costs began to devour nearly half of their combined monthly income, leaving them desperately awaiting a more permanent dwelling. Nevertheless, Garrett Sr. and Jody Ann found solace and comfort in the fact that this townhouse had become their temporary sanctuary.

Since their earliest years, Garrett Sr. and Jody Ann's four children, now ranging in age from 12 down to 4, have been constant attendees at the historical Dunbar Center, now renamed The Banner Lake Early Learning Center, and BLAST (Banner Lake After-School Time).

Deeply committed to their community, the Weavers actively participated in the "Keep Banner Beautiful" project at Banner Lake Club, diligently tending to the yards and landscapes of senior residents, participating in community clean-up events, and attending informative workshops for parents.

In an interview, Garrett and Jody Ann expressed profound gratitude towards Banner Lake Club Inc. for providing them with affordable housing, stating:

"In humble acknowledgement, we want to extend our deepest gratitude to the divine power we serve. In our darkest moments, divine intervention wiped away our tears and enveloped us with angels who provided unwavering support and encouragement. This reassured us that our children were always under divine protection, whether we were physically present or not. The Banner Lake Club emerged as a beacon of hope during our times of uncertainty, offering both security and affordability for our family's housing needs. Recognizing the multitude of people, inspiration, information, opportunities, and clear paths to success that we required, the divine power orchestrated the convergence of various individuals and resources, truly exemplifying the saying 'It takes a village to raise a child.' We are immensely grateful to be included in this remarkable program initiated by Banner Lake Club. We extend our heartfelt appreciation to everyone who has contributed to and invested in this incredible initiative and community. The faith and support extended by Banner Lake Club have played an instrumental role in our growth as a family." Garrett Sr. concluded by saying, "We also want to express our gratitude to our late father, who reminded us that sometimes angels must be called away from this world before we can embark on a journey towards better things. As we return to the city where you raised me, Dad, we recognize that this is only the beginning of our journey, and we are determined to make the most of it."