After moving, losing her job and facing a fraudulent charge on her bank account, Andrea Meckna turned to social media for help.
It was on May 24 when Meckna, a former Aliso Viejo resident, turned to a Facebook group with a plea to help her pets.
“If anyone can spare some much needed cat litter, I would so appreciate it,” Meckna wrote at 8:22 p.m. that night.
“We are almost out of dog & cat food too…maybe have two more days at the most.”
Meckna, who now lives in Laguna Hills, outlined the hardships her family was facing in addition to asking for help to make ends meet in her 300-word post.
Ninety-six Facebook comments later, Meckna, 58, has received pet food, gift cards and money to help cover the rent.
“The response that I got was unbelievable,” Meckna recalled. “Not one response was negative. It kind of blew me away.”
In the weeks since her post, Meckna has gone on job interviews and even picked up a gig singing and playing her acoustic guitar.
“This whole experience has been a tremendous blessing to my life and it also builds my trust back in people again,” Meckna said. “They were so caring to someone they didn’t know.”
The weeks preceding Meckna’s call for help weren’t easy.
After living in the same location for 10 years, Meckna got a notice that she and her husband had to move.
Three days later, Meckna was informed that her job as a client relations manager had been eliminated.
“We were really struggling facing the big move,” she said.
Her husband, who works-part time, has a head injury, making it hard for him to take on additional jobs, Meckna recalled.
“It was a really, really tough time,” she said.
When a $412 fraudulent charge appeared on her bank account and the pet food supply ran low, Meckna posted to the Facebook group with almost 7,500 members.
“I’m kind of a private person, so I don’t usually air my laundry out there to everybody,” she said. “It was very, very difficult for me to do that.”