Courtney's Clown Car

I'll try to keep it brief but there's so much to cover, and it isn't easy laying your cards out on the table for a stranger, hoping they'll care, but here goes... 

I'm trying to raise this money to payoff and replace my unsafe smart car and get more reliable transportation for my son.
It was damaged during Harvey and has cost me thousands just in the two years I have had it, since I lost my paid off car in a previous flood. I have also been rearended in it with my son in tow because people don't see me, and the engine is back there! :( It's time for this car to go.

Mason: My autistic, 4 year old son, starting Pre-k/Early education programs at our local public school this year. Forced to ride up front because the car has no back or safe child seating.

Me: A special needs mother, unemployed due to medical reasons and staying home to raise my son. I financed the vehicle when in a bind after losing my car in the first Houston flood. It was the cheapest I could afford.

WHO WILL BENEFIT: My son and I, and our family as a whole who will no longer concern themselves everytime we have to drive anywhere or get rain.

FUNDS WILL BE USED FOR: Paying off the remainder owed on this smart car and a down payment for a more safe, inexpensive to repair, reliable vehicle.

$7,300- Car Payoff | $3,500 down-payment on new vehicle | $2,600- Repairs, Transfer, Donation Fees, Misc. | $600 Car Payment Cushion/Other

HOW SOON WE NEED THE FUNDS: As soon as possible. My son is temporarily riding a funded bus, but it is not a permenant solution. In additon getting around to appointments or even church is a difficulty.

WHAT THIS MEANS TO ME: As a woman who struggles day-to-day caring for a special needs child, with no way to help my family financially, it's emotionally, mentally and physically disabling.  This would mean the world to me. To our family. I worry every time I get in the car with my son in the front seat. When I hear the engine stalling because I've been rearended twice. 

They say money can't buy happiness, and it's true, but it can provide us safer, more reliable transportation than a cheap toy car I had to finance when I lost my Ford focus in the flood two years ago. [Had liability Only - Talk about a hard learned lesson. ]

[My car getting fixed previously. Yes that's the whole car.] Repairs made recently with some of the funds already donated! 

WHAT WE'VE BEEN THROUGH:  Just... so much. In recent years I've had:  an unexpected pregnancy that was very dangerous and resulted in the inability to have more, countless medical expenses between my son and I, loss of health insurance, skin cancer removal, autism therapies, losing a car, and apartment moving due to unhealthy living conditions. I cannot stress enough how everytime I try to put away a little savings, something seems to happen and we lose that footing. 

[Just a reoccuring emergency stay for our son.]

Two years ago there was a heavy flood and my car (which was paid off), got swept up with me in it. I barely made it out and the engine was totalled. I waded through the water and still went to work. 

Then my son was diagnosed Autistic and the therapies began. Ontop of everything we took on a car payment of the 'cheapest to finance' vehicle Texas Direct Auto had. They totally took advantage of my situation, though I didn't realize it at the time. 


[Recent car repairs from the flooding.]

Now here we are in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Still oweing $7,336.68 on this Smart Car, which is unsafe, unreliable and extremely expensive to repair, but at the time, was the cheapest I could afford to finance with no credit. I also didn't know Mercades makes it and just last month replaced the radiator fan for $998 and the car is only a few years old. 

WHAT WE HOPE FOR: Any donation helps. Even a dollar. <3 We'd like to pay this car off to sell or trade in for a more reliable, safe vehicle. The additional amount is to cover a downpayment and donation fees that we might get the full coverage.


If you cannot donate, please share/reblog. It means the world to me to know people care, and that despite the constant set backs, we're not alone. 

Thank You. 


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Courtney VanStephens 
Richmond, TX
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