Bringing Home Baby: Katherinne &
Jose Ivan’s Story

By Ryan Miller on November 19, 2015

Categories: Real Stories


At LIFT, we help families face the hardships of poverty head-on. The story of Katherinne, Jose Ivan, and their baby daughter Brianna Elizabeth exemplifies the power of supporting parents of young children.

A Dream Deferred

When Katherinne and Jose Ivan first came to LIFT, the two were in a desperate situation. Katherinne was pregnant and she and her husband were anxiously seeking safe housing. At the time, they were living out of their car and often went days without eating. The life they had envisioned for themselves seemed to be a distant dream.

Katherinne and Jose met when they were just 16. Katherinne says it was love at first sight. Together, the couple immigrated to the U.S. from El Salvador hoping to find better opportunities for themselves and the family they hoped to start one day. However after they arrived they were met with obstacle after obstacle and quickly they sunk into poverty.

Coming Together for a Member

When a woman lives in poverty during pregnancy, the stressors can adversely affect the health of her child. Lifetime learning, behavior, and well-being are all in jeopardy, so it is vital to get support as early as possible.

This was where LIFT came in. Katherinne and Jose were paired with Christina, their LIFT Advocate, who helped them set goals that they worked hard to achieve.

Through LIFT, the two obtained safe housing, baby supplies, and a job for Jose. After their car was totaled in a hit-and-run accident, LIFT supporters banded together to help pay the down payment for a new car.

A Brighter Future for Baby Brianna

A few months after Jose and Katherinne began working with LIFT, baby Brianna Elizabeth was born, weighing 6 pounds and 7 ounces. Her parents were so moved by the help they received from LIFT that they gave the baby the same middle name – Elizabeth – as their Advocate Christina Elizabeth.

You can’t help but smile when you watch Katherinne and Jose admire their precious baby daughter. “Being a mother has been such a beautiful journey thus far. I’m experiencing things I’ve never felt before. It makes me thankful for every moment we have with Brianna.” And like every parent, Katherinne and Jose want the best future they can give to little Brianna. “I want for her to study hard and go to college. I want for her to have the best education possible,” says Katherinne.

“Before we came to LIFT, we had so many difficulties. But thanks to you all, we have the home we live in now, and we even have the things we need for the baby. It’s a feeling that I can’t even begin to explain,” Katherinne says. And what keeps them motivated to continue on with their journey? Katherinne is quick to respond: ‘Our baby.’ Jose isn’t far behind in his response: “Her, more than anything. She means the world to us.” As father holds daughter safe in his arms, his conviction to create a brighter future for Brianna is clear.

About the Author

Ryan Miller

At LIFT, Ryan writes and edits for a variety of communication products, including video, newsletters, fundraising campaigns, websites, blogs, new media and social media. He works with LIFT’s communications team to ensure that our voice is heard far and wide. Ryan LIFTs to expedite the journeys of those seeking the American dream. As a first-generation Read More