Roland entered Christopher Place Employment Academy (CPEA) in April of 2008 with a desire to stabilize his life and to become the person he felt he could be. In the first few months at CPEA, Roland had trouble adjusting to the new routine and trusting in the program. Looking back, it was clear to see that Roland wasn’t displaying anger, he was merely displaying his intense focus on improving his life. Since his enrollment, Roland has become a true success story within the CPEA community. Below is a letter he shared with staff showing his appreciation for the program.
“Do you all realize that I am very fortunate to even be alive to write this letter? The only way that I can pay you all back is to help somebody else. When I first came to Christopher Place, I was homeless, hopeless, and helpless. Two years ago I had emergency surgery to repair a broken jaw. The doctor told me that I was very fortunate to be alive. After I got out of the hospital, I went back to the streets for a couple weeks. It was then that I decided to check myself into a 10-day Detox program and then complete six months at another rehabilitation center in Baltimore.
When I came to Christopher Place following that 6-month rehabilitation it was April of 2008. I didn’t know what to expect, I didn’t know that I had all these rules to follow, but the rules are there for my benefit. I learned a lot about myself and also how to be a much better person. I know I still have work to do, but Christopher Place gave me all the tools that I need. Today, I am working at Johns Hopkins Hospital, going to school and have just moved into permanent housing. I am doing very well, I am very happy, and it just keeps getting better. I was always told to be patient, be patient, be patient! It has paid off and I never gave up.
I just have a lot of gratitude for what Christopher Place has done for me. My whole life has changed so much that I can’t even believe it. If I can do it, anybody can!”