“I can’t imagine what St. Louis would be like without St. Patrick Center. There is simply no other agency that does what it does very well.”
Larry, an alcoholic since his military days, left the steel business as he was nearing retirement age. He says the combination of free time and excess drinking lead to his homelessness. “I remember walking to a shelter one night, thinking ‘here I go again,’ and deciding that wasn’t the way I wanted to finish my life.”
Larry came to St. Patrick Center and joined the BEST program. He says assistant BEST coordinator Jack Hyden had quite an influence on him, giving him good insight. Larry also obtained a job through the agency’s employment department. And because he was a veteran, he joined the Project HERO program, which assisted him into housing.
“Project HERO is an excellent program, a new approach to homelessness that should be adopted all over the United States,” Larry says. “The HERO case managers helped me adjust my attitude and regulate my life. They also supported my sobriety and helped me get acclimated to paying bills.”
Larry is now retired but staying busy with part-time employment and plenty of volunteer work with local homeless agencies. He says he feels good about helping those who are struggling with substance abuse and often encourages them to go to SPC for help. “I can’t imagine not having St. Patrick Center around when I needed it.”