Dennis’s parents separated when he was very young. He had lived with his mom for most of his life, but he moved in with his dad when he was a bit older. Dennis and his Dad hadn’t had a close relationship in a long time, and living together was hard for everyone. His dad had remarried and had a family of his own, and Dennis’s stepmother was resentful that Dennis had moved in. She threatened to make him move out as soon as he turned 18, and true to her word, by Dennis’s 18th birthday his stepmother had kicked him out of the house.
Dennis had no idea what to do next. Somehow he wound up in a stranger’s house, paying for just a little space on the floor, working so that he could afford rent, and still going to school every day so that he could graduate.
Dennis could hardly keep his eyes open in his classes, and soon he began wondering how much longer he could keep everything up. What would happen if he couldn’t pay his rent? He lived in the scantest situation already. What if he couldn’t keep up with his classes? Things could only get worse if he didn’t graduate. He kept up this routine quietly and fearfully.
Desperately, Dennis confided in a friend, whose situation proved providential for Dennis. Dennis’s friend was part of Second Story for Homeless Youth, and immediately knew that Dennis needed Second Story, too.
At the assurance of his friend and the promise that he could find help through Second Story, Dennis applied and found housing.
Dennis is now grateful instead of desperate, dreaming of his future instead of exhausted. Dennis has a savings account, spends more of his time studying than working, and confides in and asks for help from his case manager instead of keeping his anxieties to himself. He graduates this month, and is convinced it wouldn’t have been possible without Second Story. We’re so proud of him, and all of the other graduates who found safety and opportunities to thrive with the help of Second Story.