Stories that Inspire.

 

 

Victories to Celebrate.

 

 

Kenneth is sober, employed, and engaged, 7 years after graduation

Kenneth, left, with RMA VV Director Bill Edwards.

Kenneth, left, with RMA VV Director Bill Edwards.

Looking back on his childhood in Compton, Kenneth feels like he “raised himself.” His father was in the military and was often away, and his mother died when he was just 4 years old—a fact that was kept from him for years. “I didn’t know my mother passed away until I was 6. No one told me,” Kenneth said. “It created a lot of problems for me growing up.”

By 11, his two older siblings had “left him behind” and Kenneth was left to live with other people anytime his dad was temporarily relocated. “I felt alone,” he said. “And I got into a lot of trouble. Someone would tease me about my mom, and I would be suspended from school for fighting. It was the beginning of a lot of bad things for me.”

At 17, Kenneth was kicked out of his father’s house as his stepmom “didn’t really like him.” He stayed in a hotel while he worked and went to college. Kenneth graduated college, but he could no longer afford the hotels and had to sleep in his car. He spiraled through cycles of homelessness, drinking, unemployment, and jail.

Finally, Kenneth’s sister suggested he get help. Kenneth heard of the men’s program at RMA Victor Valley through a friend, and in 2017, he decided to give it a try. “The program changed my life,” he said. “It helped me understand life and keep close to God… It’s done wonders for me.”

The healthy habits developed in the program are what Kenneth credits with his continued success after graduation. “The early morning devotions helped me the most. I still do it today. You get to study and get to know God a lot better.

“I learned how to hear the Lord. I learned how to make decisions with the Lord. Instead of making decisions on my own,” Kenneth added. “The best part is that right after the devotions, we (program residents) were out helping people.”

While in the program, Kenneth’s favorite way to help others was his vocational work in the thrift store. “You got to help seniors, the homeless… just a variety of people. When I studied the Bible, my heart went out to those I could help.”

Almost seven years after graduation, Kenneth still makes helping others a priority. Currently, Kenneth works as a security guard at Walmart, capitalizing on the opportunity to share the Gospel and tell those in need about the program. “I used to be the drunk homeless man. I know what it’s like.”

Kenneth lives in Hesperia with his fiancée, Coralin. They are excitedly planning their wedding, saving for a house, and staying active in their church. “I’m in a relationship with God, I stay close to God, I communicate with God. He helped me clean my life up.”

Kenneth talks to his fellow program graduates regularly as an important part of his recovery. “Since I’ve left the program, I’ve never been drunk. I’ve never been back to jail… And I used to go to jail quite a bit,” Kenneth said with a laugh. “I’m so proud the program is still going today.”

Be Inspired

Be Transformed

Stay connected with the good work the Mission is doing, and learn more about the people we help.