Arnell Myles was born in Baton Rouge at Earl K. Long hospital. Like many of us, Arnell’s family members are diverse- with a variety of different perspectives, experiences and behaviors. However, unfortunately some of them held ideologies that were harmful. At an early age, Arnell experienced severe abuse within her home. Trauma left her haunted, and without appropriate care she was unable to heal. Eventually she found herself in trouble with the law. Over time, doubt flooded Arnell’s mind. How could she ever be something more than just an ex-convict? Her abuse and trauma continued to follow her, and eventually she found herself experiencing homelessness.
Arnell found the COC through an outreach event sponsored by the Purple Cow. There, she learned about services available to her such as job training and resume building. Arnell recalls the day saying, “I graciously accepted the services I received, and they enriched my life tremendously. I found Christ, became a Christian, and changed my life.” Through the work Arnell put in at the COC, she gained the skills and resources she needed to enroll at B.R.C.C studying Culinary Arts and International Cuisine. “The COC helped with cultivating stable living conditions for raising my children and two dogs,” recalls Arnell.
“Before the COC, I had limited resources but with their help I was able to get out of the shelter and finish job training classes. I hope and pray my story and this testimonial reaches and provides encouragement that people can overcome and preserve through poverty. There is hope and an alternative from a path of destruction. No matter what your past is or was you can always have a brighter future.”
Today, Arnell is working toward her dream of opening her own local food truck. Stories like Arnell’s are why the Christian Outreach Center of Baton Rouge exists. To create opportunities for sustainable change in the lives of individuals and their families.