Before his struggle with homelessness, Joe was a successful Navy veteran who held a steady 13-year career as a machinist. But Joe struggled with drug addiction, one that cost him everything—his job, his relationships, and even his home.

Mired in addiction, Joe moved in with his sister and tried to pick up the pieces on his own, but continued to spiral. Finally, his sister had enough and said, “you’ve got to go—you just gotta go.”

During his darkest hours, Joe approached his church for help. Joe told his Pastor “I’m homeless, I need long-term treatment.” Thanks to a supportive faith community and a long-term treatment program, Joe was able to successfully treat his addiction. “I was able to get off drugs and change my life around,” Joe says.

A local organization that assists homeless veterans noticed Joe and his commitment to recovery. This veterans service provider then recommended him for the Shelters to Shutters program. Ideal candidates display a strong drive for employment, and Joe’s professional background fit the mold.

Today, Joe is no longer living in a shelter and is now a full-time groundskeeper with his own apartment. Working on advancing to the position of maintenance technician, his supervisor, Property Manager Leisa VanHoose, says “Joe is so grateful and genuine… he’s got an energy about him that’s contagious.”

“Shelter to Shutters has given me a career and a nice place to live.” Joe states as he proudly shows his new home. “There’s a great need for programs like Shelters to Shutters. This journey has been a long and rocky road, but it’s turned out really good.”

“Shelter to Shutters has given me a career and a nice place to live.”