Mr. K didn’t hesitate to become the primary caretaker for his mother when she needed it most. He juggled a lot for years as her caregiver—working to support himself and his mother, while also navigating the ups and downs of a sibling with an addiction.
He was not immune to the higher levels of stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health effects that are common for caretakers. However, by the time his mother passed away, Mr. K had lost his job and savings. When the emotional and mental toll of being a caregiver caught up with him, it all became too much, and Mr. K sought help in a mental health facility before becoming homeless. After spending months on the streets and in and out of other shelters, Mr. K came to Austin Street Center, where he began to restore his hope and independence.
Mr. K became a member of our Client Volunteer Program, which helped him gain marketable skills, further developing both technical and soft skills at Austin Street Center. Mr. K utilized his maintenance work experience and quickly became the right-hand person to Austin Street Center’s Facilities Manager. This program further enabled Mr. K to regain the confidence necessary to pursue full mental health treatment and search for employment. Austin Street Center referred him to a partnering apartment complex that was hiring maintenance staff, and Mr. K was immediately employed and also received an on-site apartment with free rent and furniture.
“Austin Street Center is what you make of it,” said Mr. K. “They helped me get back to where I needed to be, and now I want to give back by helping other clients.” Mr. K has since hired other Austin Street Center clients on a temporary basis to help determine if they are a good fit. Just recently, Mr. K offered a full-time position to one of those temporary workers, which also includes a substantial discount on rent.
“Austin Street Center is very proud of Mr. K and thankful that he now partners with us to help others in need transition from homelessness to independence,” said Daniel Roby, CEO at Austin Street Center.