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With a growing homelessness crisis in the City of San Diego, a response to this epidemic has never been more needed.
Last year, Interfaith surpassed their “Housing 1000” promise by housing 1,198 individuals. This year, we upped our pledge to end and prevent homelessness for 2,019 men, women, and children, with “Housing 2019.” With more than 1,600 people housed to date in the 18 month campaign, the impact is changing lives.
This is the story of one of those lives:
Battling mental illness and addiction, Ryan had been living on and off the streets of San Diego since he was 22-years-old. Things began to change when his estranged father reached out to him with the help of Interfaith.
Shortly after, Ryan decided to make the long journey to Escondido. The night he arrived, he slept outside of Interfaith’s headquarters; proving to himself how dedicated he was to this change.
“That’s when I knew I was going to stay clean,” Ryan said. “I was ready.”
The next day, Interfaith’s Shelters Program Manager, Lauren Pollick connected with Ryan. Lauren was able to enlist him into Interfaith’s Haven House Year-Round Shelter. For the 2 months that followed, he began receiving the support and care needed for his recovery.
During his time with Interfaith, Ryan worked close with his Case Manager, Maria Mercado. “I feel like both Maria and Lauren have been family to me,” he said. “I really don’t know what I would have done without them.”
As time went by, Ryan challenged himself through Interfaith’s sobering services and temporary housing programs to ultimately graduate from both. When he entered Interfaith’s programs, Ryan was without shoes on his feet; today he is gainfully employed, actively partakes in his passion of cross-training, has reconnected with his family, and lives in permanent, stable housing.
His advice for anyone in a similar situation who is considering getting the help they need is to “trust the process and be honest with your Case Manager. That’s the only way you’re going to get help. It’s a lot of work, but it feels incredible on the other side.”
For more information about Interfaith’s Housing 2019 campaign and how you can get involved, contact Robert Adams, Chief Development Officer, by calling (760) 489-6380 ext. 206.
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Interfaith Community Services is a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit tax exempt organization. Federal Tax ID# 95-3837714.