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“Without HVAF, I don’t know where I’d be at right now. I don’t know if I’d be alive right now.”
Navy veteran Rosario spent years trying to break out of the vicious cycle of drug use and homelessness. In 2022, when doing an assessment at a partner organizaation, he found out he could receive life-changing and life-saving services through HVAF.
After moving into one of HVAF’s transitional houses, his case manager told him it’s a sober living environment.
“It was probably about a month in to living in transitional housing, I just woke up one day and I was like you know today’s the day, I’m going (to rehab),” Rosario said.
Rosario can now proudly say he’s been sober for 14 months! He has even reconnected with his 14-year-old son.
At HVAF, 71% of veterans served in 2022 reported a mental health diagnosis or substance use issues. Rosario said staying sober can be hard some days.
“I’m not going to say I wake up every day and say, ‘I’m so happy to be sober,’” Rosario said. “Some days I wake up and think man, ‘I wish I wasn’t sober.’ But you just got to get up and cope and work through it.”
Since May 2023, after going through recovery programs at Community North’s detox center and CleanSlate, Rosario has lived at Proctor Place – one of HVAF’s permanent housing apartments. Now, Rosario always knows he has his case manager to rely on if his sobriety feels too hard to manage, or can receive help with anything else he needs.
Rosario’s next step is to find employment.
“Right now, the next goal is to get employment and try to start working on moving back into being a productive member of society,” Rosario said. “Living here, it’s been great. I have my case manager Christine’s number and if I need anything, I call her.”
Rosario encourages his fellow veterans in need to seek out the benefits and resources they deserve for defending our country’s freedom.
“Believe me when I say there are a lot of people out there that care about you and they want to help,” Rosario said. “They want to see you improve your life. They want to see you in a better place.”
We cannot end veteran homelessness without your support. Consider donating to HVAF and help Hoosier Heroes, like Rosario, today!