Jesse is a friendly, outgoing guy. He likes people and he loves life. But it wasn't always like that.
Not too long ago, Jesse was struggling just to make it through the day. He was addicted to drugs and alcohol. He was homeless. He was down on his luck. He was ready to give up.
"I was just going from shelter to shelter," he said. "From shelter to shelter, from job to job, doing temporary work wherever I could find it. I was smoking marijuana, drinking, and doing drugs."
For three long years, Jesse was homeless and addicted. He didn't know where he'd be sleeping at night or whether he'd have any money to buy food. Finally it got so bad that even he had to admit he needed help. When a friend told him about The Salvation Army, he made the decision to change.
Thanks to your generous support, The Salvation Army and its programs were there for Jesse to help him transform his life. And that's exactly what he's doing.
"After being on the streets for so long, I didn't think I was going to like it at The Salvation Army," Jesse said. "But it's a homey feeling here. They really care."
Soon Jesse settled in, happy to have a roof over his head and regular meals. He began treatment for his addiction, and he began meeting regularly with his case manager to set short-term and long-term goals for improving his life.
"The first thing they told me when I came here was — and this is from the Bible — 'To whom much is given, much is required," Jesse said. "I always remembered that. To me it means that I have to repay the help I get from The Salvation Army by doing right ... doing the best that I can."
He is, too. He is doing right. Jesse's working hard and changing his life. He just completed a six-month job internship in building maintenance. He worked jobs in carpentry and maintenance before coming to The Salvation Army. And now he's looking forward to a full-time job with The Salvation Army in building maintenance. He'll be taking care of The Salvation Army's Harbor Light building. And most important, he has been clean and sober for two years.
Jesse gives all the credit to The Salvation Army. "Everybody at The Salvation Army embraced me," he said. "They let me know that I didn't have to live like that anymore. They always encouraged me. They made me feel like I had a home here. I have nothing but love and respect for The Salvation Army."