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Bob's Journey Home

Updated: Aug 11, 2023

A man standing in front of a door wearing a blue shirt and shorts.

When Bob* came to Family Promise of Morris County, he had been experiencing street homelessness at the age of 73.

His housing journey began in 2021, when he received an unaffordable rent increase. The high cost of living and lack of affordable housing in Morris County was worsened by the pandemic; he was one of many community members faced with the challenge of maintaining housing costs.

Bob stayed with friends or paid out of pocket for hotels when he could, but his his funds soon ran out.

Then he met the Navigating Hope (NH) mobile outreach van, a partnership program with Family Promise and the Morris County Department of Human Services. NH meets community members where they are, connecting them to resources and inspiring hope.

Despite overcoming so many obstacles from his past, Bob was reluctant to accept assistance from our staff. Change can be scary; and putting his trust into new people during this stressful time was intimidating.

Over time, as he became more comfortable, Bob began working with our case management staff who supported him in setting goals, the first of which included moving safe, stable housing.

The voucher application process can be overwhelming, from gathering the necessary documents, like an ID, to filling out the paperwork. In 2022, our staff provided support along every step of the way, ensuring Bob's experience went as smoothly as possible as he applied for a voucher of his own.

After patiently waiting, it finally happened in the summer of 2023: Bob received a housing voucher and retirement funds. He was ecstatic!

Seeking assistance, obtaining an ID, and applying for the voucher were just a few of the many steps Bob had to take along his housing journey. The final step would be searching for housing in the community, something that can be time consuming and a job within itself -- but he did not do it alone!

Our Landlord Support Program works to make the housing search process easier for voucher holders like Bob.

Staff maintain a network of local landlords and property managers to help connect households with safe, affordable housing as quickly as possible. This helps break down barriers to affordable housing for many in our community, where there is a lack of affordable housing.

An arduous task to say the least, with his newfound support system, Bob found an apartment!

When it came time to sign the lease, he was hesitant about accepting this level of help. Staff sat down with Bob; talking through his goals gave him the reassurance he needed to accept this next step toward housing stability.

From his new home, Bob shared a special word with Family Promise of Morris County staff: "Acceptance."

Change and commitment can be intimidating, particularly after facing housing instability. Yet, once Bob connected with resources catered to his individual needs, he was able to stay on track with guidance from our caring and knowledgeable staff.

Bob is now settling into his very own space, which our team and volunteers helped fill with furniture and groceries -- and most importantly, made it feel like home!

Best wishes to Bob as he settles down for retirement in his home!

*Name changed for client confidentiality.

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