Garner church program helps homeless find 'jobs for life'
Posted June 19, 2014
Garner, N.C. — Ralph Mutunga loves his new job at the Toot-n-Tell restaurant in Garner and new apartment.
It’s clean and sparely furnished, but it’s the first roof over his head in a long time.
A few years ago, Mutunga’s house was damaged by fire, and he ended up living in the woods.
Out of work and out of money, Mutunga lived in the woods in Garner for two years. He would slip into First Baptist Church for a meal.
That’s where he met state trooper Sgt. Joe Gaskins, who could tell Mutunga needed help.
“When I first met Ralph, you could tell he looked homeless,” he said.
Gaskins and his wife had just begun working with a program through the church called Jobs for Life. The program’s mission is to transform lives through the dignity of work.
The Gaskins worked with Mutunga to help him secure food, shelter and transportation.
“It’s really hard to do an interview and write a great resume when you’re living in the woods,” Gaskins said.
The same man that was homeless persevered through the program, got a job and found a place to live.
“It’s all good, it’s all good,” Mutunga said. “It feels more like a first chance if you stay with it, you know?”
For Gaskins, the program is about giving to others and making a difference.
“I’ll never forget it,” he said of the experience.
For more information about the program, visit the website Jobs for Life .