Darnell Reed came to LCBH in late 2007 through a referral by his sister, a former client. Like many of our clients, he was being threatened with eviction. Darnell’s wife had passed away a year earlier while he was living in Arlington Heights. Then he moved to Chicago and took a job at Jackson Park Hospital. Unfortunately, not long afterwards he was laid off since he was the most junior staff member.
After Darnell became a legal client of LCBH, he was referred to our Housing and Employment Specialist, Ceasar Brown. Ceasar gave Darnell several referrals for both housing and employment. He said recently that Ceasar gave him so many leads that he still hasn’t had a chance to pursue all of them. Fortunately, though, one of the first places Ceasar sent him–Amtrak–called and asked him to join a training class. He has since completed training with Amtrak and is now working with them part-time. He hopes to become a full-time employee in the near future.
In the meantime, Darnell continued looking for adequate affordable housing for his family. At first, Darnell’s repeated efforts yielded nothing. “I wanted to give up many times but Ceasar kept telling me to keep going,” Darrell told me, “Ceasar always gave me his full attention! He was willing to help anyone who wanted to improve their lives.” With Ceasar’s support, Darnell continued his diligent search for housing.
LCBH legal services was able to get Darnell two extra months to relocate and then Ceasar referred him to an available house in the Roseland neighborhood. The landlord met Darnell and explained that he could move in, but he would have to put some work into the place first. The timing worked out perfectly.
Darnell went to work doing the repairs needed on the house. He did such an incredible job that the landlord skipped his first month's rent and security deposit. And now Darnell and his family even have the option to rent-to-buy the house. Thanks to LCBH and the hard work done by Ceasar Brown, Darnell’s life has turned around. He and his family have gone from possible homelessness and unemployment to a solid job and a house that one day may be theirs!