I had to learn how to walk again.”
Frederick is a resident of the BronxWorks Park Haven Supportive Housing Program. Frederick had been in a homeless shelter for two years when, in 2019, he was hit by a bus and sustained serious injuries. He was put in the hospital for four months. The hospital discharged Frederick before he could fully recover at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic when hospitals were overrun with the initial wave of COVID cases. The only place Frederick could go was the BronxWorks Living Room Drop-in Center. He was still recovering from his injuries.
As one of the only 24-hour drop-in centers in the Bronx, the Living Room is a crucial resource for street homeless adults to spend time off the street, use the laundry, take a shower, eat a hot meal, and connect with essential homeless services. It is, however, not equipped to provide the significant medical care that Frederick still needed. BronxWorks Adult Homeless Services staff worked to place Frederick at the Pyramid Safe Haven, where they could provide him with a private room and bed to help his recovery. “They were so good there. They had security monitoring to make sure I was alright. I was able to prop my feet up like I was supposed to.”
Then I focused on getting my foundation.”
While at the Pyramid Safe Haven, Frederick worked with Lisbenny Salcedo, then a Housing Specialist. “The goal for many of our clients is permanent housing,” Lisbenny said. “Frederick was very committed. He knew what he wanted and what he wanted was to obtain his own place.” Lisbenny helped Frederick complete the paperwork for a housing package. He interviewed for housing and was ultimately selected for the Park Haven Supportive Housing Program in late 2021, shortly after it opened.
BronxWorks offers supportive housing and care management at an array of sites across the Bronx. In supportive housing and other strategies to address homelessness, BronxWorks follows a Housing First model, believing that providing homeless individuals with access to stable housing is an essential first step to resolving many life issues.
For Frederick, that belief has taken him out of the shelter system, helped him recover from his injuries, and given him a place to call his own. He has his own closet to display his hat collection and loves doing his own dishes. “I’m 61, and this is the first time I can stay I have something that’s mine, that I earned.”
I got my strength back through BronxWorks.”
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