John could only dream about having a warm and secure home or fresh and satisfying foods.
“When I came to St. Vincent de Paul Village, I was hopeless and broken,” John shared. “Even though I was two weeks sober, I was still shaking quite a bit.”
Due to life’s unforeseen circumstances, John struggled to get back on his feet so much that he could never remember the last time he ate. When he came to the Village after the streets, he did not even have his birth certificate, medical insurance or an I.D.
“When the Village took me, I was so thankful that now I could eat three meals a day and have a warm bed to sleep in every night,” said John. “I could not even imagine that the Village would also help me fight off my addiction and find a job.”
After a short period of time, we helped John get his birth certificate and a California I.D. To help him with his alcohol addiction, John enrolled into our Addiction Treatment & Education Center (ATEC) program for 32 weeks.
John followed the program seamlessly. Because he showed progress, he was approved for full dentures and glasses.
Later, John enrolled in the Village employment skills courses. Because he was a piano teacher in his past life, he started to look for work in the field of music, applying all he learned from the program.
“Today, I have a whole new life. I have my own business and live in a three-bedroom apartment with my family,” John shared excitedly. “I would tell any homeless man that change is possible. If they go to St. Vincent de Paul Village and follow the programs, they can get that new life!”
Each homeless man, woman or child’s story is unique, yet all are missing two pieces for a better life—food and shelter. These are basic essentials but can do miracles for a homeless neighbor—both can give security, support and hope for the future.
No matter the circumstances, no one deserves to starve or sleep on a cold street. Please don’t forget our homeless neighbors this season.