Glendale community raising money for young man raising 7 siblings, facing foreclosure

At 18 years old, Raul Acosta had to grow up pretty fast. His mother unexpectedly passed away, and he was left to care for his seven younger siblings.
Published: Apr. 27, 2022 at 4:47 PM MST
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GLENDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - At 18 years old, Raul Acosta had to grow up pretty fast. His mother unexpectedly passed away, and he was left to care for his seven younger siblings.

“I was hoping somebody in the family would take that over and handle the responsibilities. I had other plans myself, but you gotta do what you gotta do, and I took on the responsibility,” Acosta said. “I wasn’t going to let them go into foster care, get separated. So I did what I needed to do to keep them together. They’re good kids.”

The family stayed in the home they all grew up in. At the time, the siblings ranged in ages one and a half to 16 years old.

“I’d rather keep them all together, know that they’re good, that they’re safe, keep them all under one roof. This house belongs to all of them; you know what I mean? It helps me sleep at night knowing we’re all under the same roof and we’re safe,” Acosta said.

Acosta first met attorney Sandra Creta several years ago. She helped him gain legal guardianship of his siblings.

“I was so impressed by his maturity and the fact that he had already been packing lunches, braiding hair, changing diapers, using his money from his job at Burger King to fix up the house for years. He was already the dad to the little ones,” Creta said.

Now at 26 years old, Acosta is working multiple jobs to make ends meet. However, during the pandemic, his hours were cut.

“When COVID hit, I ended up falling behind on payments. I work as a tow truck driver. I was supposed to work at a car wash. I ran through jobs, you know,” Acosta said. “It’s hard to keep up with everything. The fact that I have to buy the food, I have to pay the electric, I have to pay the water, I have to pay insurance on the cars and the house, it all adds up.”

Acosta said they hadn’t received help from the state since December. During the pandemic, he also couldn’t receive mortgage assistance because the home loan was still under his mother’s name. Creta and a team of attorneys are working to fix that. In the meantime, they’re trying to save his house.

“I reached out to the legal community and said I have this client who is one of the best people I know, and he needs help, and he needs help right away,” Creta explained. “As grown-up and mature and responsible and amazing as you are, we can’t do things alone all the time. He did not ask for help, but there was no way I was letting this family lose their home.”

The Sole Practitioners/Small Firms Association of Arizona started a GoFundMe page for Raul and his siblings. They have to pay almost $14,000 by May 6th, or they will lose the house they grew up in.

“We’re hoping to save it and fix it up. There’s a lot of things that need work around it. It’s not the prettiest thing, but it’s a roof over our head,” Acosta said. “They’re good kids, and they all work with me. We all work together as a team. Whatever we need to knock out, whatever we need to do, we get it done together. We work as a team.”