Gerry had been living on the beach in Malibu, CA for 10 years when the Woolsey fire destroyed the area. “I lost everything I had,” says Gerry, “my shelter, my belongings, my paperwork and ID – everything. I didn’t know what to do after that.” In response to the Woolsey fire, The People Concern participated in an emergency resource event to help people experiencing homelessness. That is when Gerry began working The People Concern. “I knew of The People Concern before. Their outreach teams would bring me food and hygiene products regularly,” recalls Gerry.

Once connected to The People Concern Gerry quickly moved into interim housing and with the help Melissa, A Housing navigator with The People Concern, they began working on securing permanent housing for him. “Getting to know Gerry and watching him grow has been amazing. He’s been housed and sober for over a year now, his apartment is beautiful. He now has cats that he loves. Gerry is just a great person all around. He is why I do what I do, because everyone deserves a home. I am always so proud to see how far someone can come just by having a stable place to live,” says Melissa.

View Gerry’s full visual story on The People Concern’s YouTube channel.