“I’m very independent. I take pride in that.”

Several years ago, Michael was experiencing homelessness while working part-time as a truck driver. Earning $17 an hour and with a month’s rent in the bank, he planned on staying in a shelter for only a few weeks, but several setbacks in 2018 threw him off his stride and led to extended periods on the streets.

“I was never given a chance to catch my breath,” he said.

In January of that year, he developed pneumonia while living in a shelter. In the summer, he suffered a broken knee and concussion. He survived a severe overdose at the end of October, followed by another a month later.

Michael has spent some time in a prison hospital, and he's also stayed at various rooming houses.

“I left my last place of housing voluntarily because I was being treated poorly, and the place wasn’t managed that well. I’m very independent. I take pride in that,” he said.

It was while staying in a shelter in December 2018 that Michael was offered the opportunity to move to SHOW.

The reason for the improvement in his health and wellbeing is pretty simple, he said.

“The fact that I have stable housing. That’s all.”