John and his siblings were raised on the south side of Chicago by his grandmother. His grandmother was a part-time nurse who struggled to keep steady, living-wage employment and provide for the whole family. By the time John was a teenager, he needed to leave home and find his own way to survive. Like too many other young people in Chicago, John ended up homeless and living on the streets.
John created his own support system on the streets and heard about Teen Living Programs from a friend in a similar situation. He was grateful to move into Belfort House, where he finally had a roof over his head again and consistent meals. Despite not attending high school for the past two years, TLP staff were able to help John re-enroll in a local charter school.
Experiencing homelessness has not deterred John and his dreams. He is earning excellent grades and has joined the high school’s basketball team. As an aspiring athlete, John especially values the health services he receives at TLP, working on a nutrition plan and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Recently, John was honored with the Student Athlete of the Year award from his charter school, and his basketball team came in third place in the championship series.