Billy A., 34, is one of a dozen veterans at HVAF participating in a new 4-part series budgeting class held by Corrine Harvey, a licensed clinical social worker along with MSW Intern MacKenzie Maloney. Topics ranged from money management to avoiding pitfalls veterans face as they transition home.
|Budgeting Class at HVAF
During his transition home, the Indianapolis-area veteran of the U.S. Army National Guard had fallen on hard times. For 2 years, he was homeless. When he first learned about services offered to veterans through HVAF he was reluctant at first. Like so many homeless veterans who have lived for years on the streets, Billy had come to feel ashamed and resisted taking the difficult steps to come in from the outside.
HVAF recovery program staff encounter such resistance each day in their work to reach and serve veterans like Billy. They empathized with him. Billy agreed to enter HVAF’s recovery program (REST) and was determined to change his life around for the better.
“I am hopeful that the clients that walk away from the budgeting class will start to feel like they have more control over their lives and their money,” says Corrine Harvey, LCSW. “The premise is self-sufficiency but the overall purpose is empowerment.”
“I was in denial,” says Billy. “I know my spending habits had gotten out of control and what money I did have was spent on drugs and so I had very little and knew I needed some help. I was feeding my addiction,” adds Billy.
Fred Young, HVAF’s REST Coordinator, has noticed improvements in Billy as far as his ability to adjust to change.
Billy’s steps in seeking help at HVAF has enabled him to trust others again. He has embraced his circumstances and is making progress in the recovery program. He also has reconnected with his family which has brought both joyful and painful memories in which he is working through. Billy is excited about a fresh start; one that includes employment one day soon.
“I am learning ways to manage my money. I don’t want to end up back on the streets,” adds Billy.