01 Mar Crisis Stories: Jason
It seems like I fell out of the sky and landed in the safety net that is Rockford Rescue Mission.
I’m from Rockford, but I got a commercial driver’s license and moved to Florida in 2004 to be a truck driver. I lost my CDL during the recession in 2007. Then I couldn’t pay child support. It was like a chain that broke me down. So I ended up doing a different trade because of that. I got licensed as a barber and hair stylist in Florida, and did that successfully for a few years. But it ended with COVID.
I always was aware of the Mission. For me, coming back to Rockford during COVID was a safer option than being homeless in Florida. I’m not licensed to cut hair in Illinois, though. It’s difficult to transfer your credentials from one state to another, and it would require new certification and training. The more stable long-term option for me will be to drive a truck again. The Mission has helped connect me with resources for housing, and now I’m on the waiting list for an apartment. Then I hope to get a grant and go back to school and start over for CDL truck driving.
The Mission is a good, safe place for me to be as I get my senses back together while I can figure out which direction to go. This is a stressful time for everybody. Thank God that this place is here. I know it’s not a coincidence that I’m here. For the others staying here right now, it’s not a coincidence. Because you hear their stories and you know how God works, so you see those strings attaching everyone together. It’s a safety net. Thank God for that safety net.