When Cedric works with our shelter guests, he draws on lessons he learned from his father. “He was awesome – intelligent, self-educated. He would read the Sunday paper from the first page to the last.”
Cedric says his dad taught him things like how to use tools, how to save and how to pay bills. “He taught me about duct tape. He thought duct tape worked for everything! Most Saturday afternoons, we washed the car, we cut the grass, and we went on a drive.” Cedric tried to teach similar lessons to his own five children.
As a shelter supervisor, Cedric serves as a positive male role model for our guests. He says the heart of his work is getting to know people – learning their names and what’s going on in their lives. “I try to teach them how to be prudent,” he says. “I try to show them the basics of having the tools they need, the wash towel and toothbrush and soap and towel. The little supplies that can get you through.”
With 29 years of sobriety, Cedric is open about his own experience with addiction. But he always tries to listen first. “I try to let these guys know I get it. I understand,” he says. “My dad was a very prudent person. I think what helps me with these guys is I’m trying to show them the same.”