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2 min read

New Beginnings: Treasures from the heart

Jarrod’s life in Spokane has been a series of ups and downs. He battled with addictions for more than 10 years. Yet on March 11, 2024, he will celebrate 5 years of being clean and sober! At UGM, he is healing from the past and finding a way forward, propelled by hope and community.

 

Three months ago, Jarrod came to UGM with a history of PTSD and depression, both linked to childhood events. For most of his life, he had never learned to cope in a healthy way. Instead, he used drugs and alcohol for many years.

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Once Alone, Now Lifted Up By Others

Jarrod attributes part of his life turnaround to owning his own E-bay store where he did a lot of reselling.

He said, “It was very successful, but I spent 2 or 3 years with stuff, and not with people. I didn’t have anyone around or [any relationships]. It got to the point where I started gambling. That was one of my other vices that led me [to UGM]. I ended up giving up my inventory and my old space. I said, ‘Enough is enough,’ and I spent 3 days on the street before coming here. It was rough. It wasn’t until I reached up and said a prayer that He led me here. That’s fascinating in itself!”

 

“I spent 3 days on the street before coming here. It was rough. It wasn’t until I reached up and said a prayer that He led me here.”

 

 

Since his arrival, Jarrod has received counseling and medication to help with PTSD and depression. He explained, “Yeah, those things help, but I think the biggest thing is being around people, creating friendships and relationships with people here at UGM. I went from being by myself, isolated and introverted, to building a brotherhood of people I can trust and confide in. We can help each other and lift each other up.”

 

 

Unique Opportunities in the Shelter Environment 

Jarrod was assigned the graveyard shift at the UGM desk as his daily chore—a requirement for staying at the Shelter. The position assists staff with security and the various needs of the guests. He says the sleep schedule has been a challenge, but he sees a greater purpose in it. “We become better people because of those challenges. I like challenges in a good way, like the desk work, doing check-ins, learning about security, watching footage. It’s awesome to learn new skills. In the end, it’s great that our chores are helping to build us up. They’re challenging us to step outside of our comfort zone.”

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Jarrod finds [attending] chapel every night to be a blessing. “Every one of us has their own task of finding their higher power. Chapel has given me the opportunity to learn from different chaplains from all over.” He feels honored to be part of a one-on-one Bible study, an activity that helps to build his faith and relationships. He knows that the people at UGM are here for him one hundred percent.

 

 

“Knowing that UGM is a high-barrier place with essentially zero tolerance for drug use or drinking is a comfort. Knowing that those temptations won’t be there, I’ll be able to find comfort and solace.”

 

 

When considering those who are struggling with similar issues, he says, “It’s okay to ask for help. Being out on the street for [even] just a few days can be dark and depressing. You see so much out there, especially the drug use. Knowing that UGM is a high-barrier place with essentially zero tolerance for drug use or drinking is a comfort. Knowing that those temptations won’t be there, I’ll be able to find comfort and solace. I can put my head down and not have to worry about my surroundings.”

 

 

Looking Forward With Hope

In the future, Jarrod would love to get back to re-selling and treasure-hunting. He hopes to combine that passion with having a family someday. Because of the new life he’s found at UGM, he wants to continue following God and building friendships with trustworthy people who he can confide in.

We pray blessings for Jarrod as he continues taking new turns on his path with the help of friends at UGM—a way only made possible by your faithful generosity. 

 

 

 

No one wants to see people living on the streets. There's another path. Learn more. >>

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