It was mid February and for the first time in your life you were homeless. You were staying at the Crossroads Mission, a local homeless shelter, and desperately looking for a way out. The Mission had transported you to a fish restaurant where you were going to have a job interview later that day. You were dressed up and early, with nowhere to go. Outside of a building near the restaurant stood a group of people smoking cigarettes, so you walked over to them and asked them for a smoke. A Hawaiian man, who was larger than life in every way ( tall, big, huge smile) introduced himself to you as Maui. You asked him what the facility you and he were standing in front of was. Maui went on to explain what the Transitional Living Center Recovery was and what services they provided. He asked you questions about yourself; How are you? What happened that made you end up in the situation you were in? You remember feeling a sense of comfort. You had all but forgotten about normal conversations and friendly personalities. You explained that you were there for a job interview at the fish restaurant next door, and Maui asked if you had a resume. You did, but not a copy that you could give at the interview. He then led you into the the TLCR, helped you print out several copies, and told you to come back after the interview.
After the interview you returned to the TLCR to find out more about the facility. Maui was there and he introduced you to staff, who then helped you with paperwork to become part of the group. You were beside yourself, you had no idea there was such a place that helped people like you. Up to that point you had decided that you were truly all alone in the world. You figured you would have to struggle by yourself to get out of the rut you had found yourself in. The TLCR employee showed you around and told you about some of the programs they offered; one of which was a Smart Recovery meeting they were having that day. You went to that meeting and there you saw Maui again. He welcomed you and the whole atmosphere of the place seemed inviting.
Fast forward to now, months later and you are now living in one of the recovery homes and apart of many groups that they provide at TLCR. You have made many friends and positive relationships with staff members, all of which are dedicated to helping you in your recovery, but Maui will always hold a special place in your heart. You see him almost every day, and unless he is deathly ill, you can always count on him to have a giant smile on his face. He is a man who has decided to be a kind oasis in a desert of negativity. You know you will always be able to come to him with your problems and attitudes and he will not only listen, but be supportive. He works with you to come up with solutions to your issues. You were so surprised when you first came to find out he wasn’t staff, but a member of the organization. In your experience in life, people only seem to help one another when it somehow benefits themselves, which is the reason individuals like Maui should be considered selfless and amazing human beings. Imagine if today’s society was able to absorb even a small piece of his caring nature, what a world of difference it would make.