When Cody was paroled from incarceration he didn’t have a penny to his name. He’d come from a troubled past and was looking for a way out. It took him less than a week to find work, but being homeless on the streets was tough.
“When I got out I had nothing; I was pretty raw and unfiltered,” said Cody. “I was staying at a homeless shelter when somebody passed away next to me one night, and I couldn’t take being there anymore.”
Cody knew that Guiding Light keeps its doors open to anyone who needs a place to stay. That night at 2:00 a.m. he walked in and later joined the Back to Work Program. The program offers housing to men for up to 120 days as they look for work and helps them save 75 percent of their check for new housing.
“I walked in with two jobs already. I grinded sunrise to sunset. I just needed a roof over my head. They were willing to give me a chance, so I buckled down and took this place for everything it was.”
With help, Cody was able to find his own apartment. Now he is self-employed working as a subcontractor building homes and buildings. “I’m about to do a really big project. It’s cool. I love it. I wouldn’t have any other job in the world.”
Cody says that without Guiding Light, getting his life back together would have been much harder. “It kept me from the darker side of Grand Rapids. I was already ambitious and hungry, because of them I was able to remain focused on getting my life back together. The struggle is real out there, no doubt about it. Life is 10 percent what happens to you and 90 percent how you deal with it.”