He is not ashamed of his past.

An image of a man with a beardJeff speaks quietly and confidently about his life. Though he certainly has regrets, he is not ashamed of his past – he accepts it and understands he would not be who he is today without it.

Jeff knows that Harvest House, with its residential recovery program, has been a constant source of hope and support through his years of struggle – years that have been hard, but have left him a better man.

A Sarasota native, Jeff first started using drugs at 13 and eventually drifted into life on the streets. Now 42, he has been drug-free for five years – but many of the years in between were spent either incarcerated or in and out of shelters.

“The people from Harvest House were always there for me with an open door.” After going through the recovery program and staying drug-free for several years, Jeff applied for and was accepted into the Home Again Supported Housing Program.

We were able to be there for him because our donors have been here for us, supporting Harvest House and the clients we serve.

Jeff recently completed an environmental training program and obtained a license for asbestos removal. Now he is working on getting his GED degree.

In the future, he says he might like to work in social services: “I want to do something where I relate to people, where I use my experience to help them, to help them not make the same mistakes I made.”

“I can show them how the people at Harvest House did not give up on me and how they won’t give up on them.”

Jeff believes that “sooner or later a door will open” and he will find work where he can make a significant contribution.