A Hemet woman who says she is in a desperate financial
situation resorted to trading toys for milk and diapers Wednesday morning in
Standing on the corner of Central and Cambern avenues, a woman who asked to only be identified as “Rhonda” surrounded herself with dolls and small stuffed animals. Holding a sign that read, "Trade toys for diapers, food & milk," woman said she is doing the best she can to make ends meet.
“I don’t have any money,” she said.
The mother of two teenagers and two adult children said she was in Lake Elsinore from Hemet to avoid embarrassing her kids.
“They hate that I do this,” she admitted, pointing to her late model gold Saturn sedan that appeared to have a rear door taped on.
Rhonda shares a rental house with her teens and one adult daughter, along with the daughter’s boyfriend and their baby. Rhonda said she receives $590 in monthly welfare benefits and she doesn’t have a job. Her husband left her for another woman and she hasn’t heard from him, she said.
“Nobody wants to employ me,” she continued. “I’m missing teeth, I have a felony record.”
She admits to drug abuse, but said she’s been clean for three years. She also confessed to a past history of prostitution and shoplifting.
Her gig on the Lake Elsinore street corner Wednesday was learned: Her mom did it before she died.
She told her kids, “I have to try what Grandma did.”