Paul lived in his car, churches or shelters for ten years before he came to Community Resource Center at the age of 68.
Formerly an electrician, when Paul became ill and disabled, he could no longer work and struggled to make ends meet, eventually losing his housing and becoming homeless. Paul applied for Section 8 housing, but was on the waitlist for a long time and unable to find an affordable place to rent.
While Paul was homeless, he volunteered at local churches, who provided him the opportunity for a shower and clean clothing. Paul says, “I didn’t want to look homeless. If you look homeless, you’ll be treated as homeless.”
Paul learned about Community Resource Center and began coming to our Food & Nutrition Center for emergency food and assistance.
Paul says, “When it came to really needing help, CRC was really there for me. The volunteers at the food center even helped me with my strict diet because I’m sick. They found things I could eat. You guys help everybody.”
Paul also began working with Shakera, a CRC case manager, who helped him find housing options that he could afford. Paul participated in financial education classes and continued to receive food weekly at our Center.
In April of this year, Paul was able to move into a home of his own with the help of rental deposit assistance from the CRC and the City of Encinitas’ Opening Doors Program. With donations from CRC’s Resale Stores, Paul was able to furnish his new apartment and make it feel like home. He says, “The first night I was there, I only had a reclining chair. Then I got a bed. It became home.”