By Eliott Rodriguez

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A new program launched by the Miami Bridge is helping pair young adults in crisis, in need of short-term housing, with residents in Miami-Dade who volunteer their homes.

One of the participants in the program called Host Homes is Jordany S.

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He left his Fort Myers home at 19 after coming out as gay to his family.

“I was dealing with family issues, dealing with not getting the support that I needed,” said Jordany.

Overwhelmed, he dropped out of school and felt he needed a change. He arrived in Miami with little other than his car and some courage.

“I got a job at a Burger King and Denny’s, I was working two jobs. I didn’t want people to know I was living in my car,” he said.

After six months of showering at the gym, sleeping in the car, and worrying about his safety, a phone call to a school counselor would be a lifeline.

“I sucked up my pride and I said, ‘Listen, I’m homeless. I sleep in my car and I haven’t been going to school this entire year. I need help, I really need help’,” he said.

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The counselor connected him with the Miami Bridge, an organization that provides emergency shelter for 10 to 17-year-olds.

They offer support of all kinds to the youths in their care and aim to reunite families whenever possible. The just-recently launched Host Homes helps people like Jordany.

D’Mychal Norwood oversees this program and shares how it came about.

“We noticed at the point of turning 18, some of the people we are helping had nowhere to go. Some of them have a family, but we had a few of them that had to go into shelter programs,” said Norwood.

Through Host Homes, they are temporarily placing 18–21-year-olds with volunteers in the community who have an extra bedroom and a welcoming heart. The hosts must be at least 27 years old and undergo a background check before they are matched carefully to find a good fit.

Jordany now has a roof over his head, continues working to finish high school, and is focusing on his dream of being a singer.

“I may not be the next Beyonce or the next John Legend, but I’m going to be something,” he said.

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For more information on the Host Homes program and the Miami Bridge visit their website here. 

Eliott Rodriguez