By Emily Emshoff

We are happy to be sharing the success story of Jerome Lucas, a previous client at Gateway Center who was a part of the Life Changers Program and is now stably housed and self-sufficient.

In 2012 Jerome had a job working at a restaurant, and things were going well.  When he unexpectedly lost his job and was denied unemployment benefits, he found himself with nothing, and nowhere to turn.

“It was so much stress. Everything started to pile up on me.”

Jerome unfortunately suffered a stroke on Mother’s Day and was desperately in need of assistance. His daughter brought him to Gateway at a point when he was not even able to walk.

“I met Vince Smith (Executive Director at Gateway Center) and he ended up being my best friend. He got me a walking cane.”

Jerome became a part of the Life Changers program where he worked closely with several case managers as he healed and worked to turn his life around. When he arrived at Gateway, he had no income, and his Social Security benefits were pending. After working with case managers, he was awarded his Social Security benefits and was then eligible for an income-based senior living apartment.

After completing the Life Changers program, Jerome was able to apply for an apartment, was accepted and moved into housing. One of our case managers was kind enough to give Jerome a TV and a chair as a start to furnish his new home.

“It was nice to realize the apartment and the stuff in it was all mine, and nobody could take it from me. I couldn’t get put out.”

Jerome says the biggest lesson he learned was that when you are going through hard times, you have to keep your head up and some good will come along; you will meet some good people.

“If it wasn’t for Gateway, I wouldn’t even be here. Nobody else cared as much as they do at Gateway.”

 

 

Last year over 4,400 unique persons stayed at Gateway Center in their journey towards self-sufficiency and out of homelessness.  $10 provides meals for a day for one client. Every dollar counts.  Make a donation today.