Permanent Supportive Housing

Before finding his way to Volunteers of America Oklahoma Derayl had given up on himself. Derayl remembers “when I was young my life was going crazy, I dropped out of school.” When his mother died and he wanted to die too, Derayl’s lowest time in his life was when he found himself homeless, he had no where to go and was consumed with drugs for 30 years. Derayl remembers “I was mad, sad and didn’t want to keep living. I was on the path of nothing but trying to hurt myself.”

Derayl moved back to Tulsa, to be closer to where his mother was buried when he found the Tulsa Day Center for the Homeless. It was at the Day Center Derayl first heard of Volunteers of America Oklahoma. Derayl was accepted into the Permanent Supportive Housing program, with his case manager they decided on the goals he would reach with in the program and then he moved into a fully furnished apartment. “Not having anything but the clothes on my back, when I moved in I thought my dreams had come true.” said Derayl, “Volunteers of America Oklahoma helped me relax and see things different.”

Derayl began classes to earn his GED, he confidently passed in April 2013. He is now working on college courses. Derayl tells everyone who will listen about the way Volunteers of America Oklahoma gave him a chance. “Volunteers of America Oklahoma they saw me, they actually saw me. They didn’t see my record, they didn’t see my hurt, they didn’t see my disappointments, they just saw Derayl, a person that needed a chance – a change. My life is changing for the better, because of Volunteers of America Oklahoma, and I will do my best to make you proud of me. This is what God, my mother and I wanted for my life, a chance.”