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On March 20, 2010, my life took a turn into what I thought would never happen -- I was homeless. Despite having a full time job, a combination of unfortunate personal decisions, poor money management and an unstable relationship led to this. In over my head and facing eviction, I turned to the Sulzbacher Center for help. Despite my fears of what living in a “shelter” would be like for me and my children, the Center was better than I could have ever hoped for -- clean, bright, kid friendly and family oriented, with a private space for us to stay in.
After three deployments (two to Iraq, one to Afghanistan) as a medic and pararescuer, David Daugherty left the military and developed an alcohol problem. Struggling with PTSD, he hit bottom and the military sent him for treatment. Once he completed his time in rehab, David became connected with The Mission Continues, which awards community service fellowships to post-9/11 veterans, empowering them to transform their own lives by serving others and directly impacting their communities. This fellowship brought him to Sulzbacher, to volunteer with residents, particularly veterans. David also serves on the Veterans Task Force and has played an integral role in helping Sulzbacher leadership and staff understand the special needs of the veterans we serve.
Arinether Wilkes had a home, a job and a family. When the economy faltered, unfortunately, so did she. She lost her job, then her home. With two teenage daughters and a baby on the way, she was going through a divorce and became homeless. She and her daughters came to Sulzbacher and Ms. Wilkes set her mind to finding her way back into the job market and permanent housing. With her baby now 5 months old, that’s exactly what she did.
Donald Beard lived on the streets of Jacksonville from 1992 through 2002. His first encounter with the Sulzbacher Center took place during a conversation with Case Manager Susan Sulzbacher. As Susan sat in her car waiting for a client at Shands Hospital Pharmacy, Donald found the courage to finally ask for help.
The Sulzbacher Center saved Michael Speed's life more than once. In 1995 the Sulzbacher Center opened its doors and Michael was one of our first clients. When asked about the first time he received help from the Center, Michael had this to say, “I remember some of the guys were talking about this new shelter that had just opened. They had this program and that program. I decided that I should go check it out.