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George Siletti’s Story

I was homeless, on and off for 30 years.  I never finished high school and never achieved a GED.  I had a job that paid $5.15 an hour, but it was impossible to live off of that.  I became homeless.  I slept outside, usually under a bridge.  I would ask for spare change or eat out of garbage cans.

Someone I knew downtown recommended Friendship Place.  I liked upper northwest – it was safer than downtown.  When I first came into Friendship Place I was surprised. It looked like a house, complete with a living room setting.  The people were so friendly.  My caseworker, Wendy Guyton, gave me inspiration to help me help myself. She believed in me. I saw the psychiatrist – Dr. Keisling – he is a godsend and the doctor who gave me medicine to stop my seizures.  Every week, Wendy asked me if I took my medicine.

Wendy helped get me on Social Security Disability Insurance so that I could get a monthly check. I was then able to get my apartment on Idaho Avenue. I have a phone and am in the phonebook.  I know it sounds silly – but having a phone and mailbox makes me part of community.  I am no longer a homeless statistic.  I am part of your community, or should I say our community.

I am now on the Board of St. Luke’s Shelter – from homeless to resident of St. Luke’s Shelter, to Board member – I am very proud.  I am glad I could speak today about all the wonderful things Friendship Place has done for me.

Your Donation Helps End Homelessness!

Your support for Friendship Place has a lasting impact. In 2023, our programs ended or prevented homelessness for 4,993 people, including 1,507 children in families and 670 veterans. We empowered 167 people experiencing or at risk of homelessness to get jobs through innovative, state-of-the-art job placement services. Make a donation today in support of our work to end homelessness. Questions? Please feel free to call our fundraising office, 202.957.7834.

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