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Orville’s Story


Washington-native, Orville, (pictured above) was living the dream for the first 30 years of his life—he owned a home, was married to a beautiful woman, and had three lovely children.

At age 59, Orville was a professional printer and book binder whose job became obsolete because of technology. Unable to keep up with his expenses, Orville became homeless. During this time, a family member’s relationship became abusive and Orville intervened, with disastrous consequences: the abuser shot him.

Orville had a lingering resentment. “The anger inside me forced me to seek out the man who shot me but I never found him. I found something else instead—cocaine.” Drugs did more than assuage Orville’s anger; they also helped him escape the reality of his homelessness.

In early 2014, Orville found a treatment program that helped him become sober. While there, he was referred to AimHire, where he met Employment Specialist, Bianca Palmisano. “I talked to Bianca for a few weeks about what I was looking for, and she helped me learn how to use a computer so I could start filling out job applications.”

Orville is now working as a stock clerk at Costco. His goals are to save money to get a driver’s license and a car, with an eye toward starting his own home-improvement business someday.

“Before Friendship Place, I had nothing. I was living on the streets, living on someone else’s floors, someone else’s couch—I don’t blame anyone, it was of my own doing, my own resentment holding me down. But today I know I don’t have to live like that, and I feel like a million dollars.”


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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