“I remember having 2 jobs and still didn’t have enough money to support housing.”
Soulieo experienced homelessness for 10 years. While his nights were spent sleeping behind buildings, apartments, job sites, or on friend’s couches, he spent his days working in case management and performing data entry for a psychiatrist. Neither paid enough to help him secure housing.
“I very rarely hear ‘I love you” or ‘I’m proud of you,’ and that affects a person’s mental state.”
Throughout this decade of housing insecurity, Soulieo also experienced a lack of human connection with those who were not homeless themselves. Outside of service providers and the police, Soulieo found it hard to interact with other individuals, but he has since found a band of brothers through the fitness and community-focused organization Back on my Feet, with whom he’s run 5 marathons.
Currently, Soulieo has secured housing and is taking his time planning his business, SJ Kirby Enterprise. His hope is to be a funding stream for nonprofits, and he plans on making a nonprofit himself. When he is not building his business, you can find him listening to ‘90s NYC rap and R&B, as well as enjoying a good hearty laugh from anything in life.