Finding a Home at Tamayo Village
At SAY we know that we aren’t just here for a young person’s first chance to succeed, we’re here for the second, and the third. For Jeramy, who moved into Tamayo Village at 18 after being homeless on and off since the age of 16, Tamayo Village was one of his first stable homes. But a desire to reconnect with his mom and sister in the mid-west led Jeramy to move out and leave work and school to be with his family. “I feel like some mistakes have to be made to learn from it – you know it’s a bad choice but sometimes you just have to do it anyway.” Jeramy knew it was time to leave when he starting falling back into old patterns and became depressed. When he returned to Sonoma County, Jeramy was homeless again, and couch surfed, relying on friends and family to help out, “when I couldn’t find a place to stay I would stay up all night and walk around so that the cold wouldn’t get me.”
While the first thing you notice about Jeramy is that he is “really, really tall”, the next is his motivation and positive attitude. Despite being homeless, Jeramy earned a job within the first week that he returned to Sonoma County, and he came back to SAY’s teen shelter for food and supplies. Our staff welcomed him back and encouraged Jeramy to apply to live at Tamayo Village again. It took a few months on our waiting list for a room to open up, but Jeramy moved back into Tamayo Village in January with a newfound determination to succeed.
When asked about his dreams, Jeramy explains, “this sounds kind of weird but my dream is to get a ’67 Mustang Fastback, all original, and to graduate with a BA in Mechanical Engineering. I’m really bad at math, so it’s a good way to challenge myself. I have an engineering mind, for taking things apart and putting them together again. And I want to live in the county – I grew up around gangs my whole life, I was never affiliated, but my whole family was, so I just want to get away from all that.”
At 19, Jeramy has a bright future ahead, and a stable home at Tamayo Village. “If I hadn’t come to SAY when I ran away at 16 there is no way I would be here today. It’s a relief to know that whenever I need help I can get it.” Today, Jeramy is focused on saving money for his dream car, and is planning to re-enroll at the SRJC next semester.