Darnell and his 13-year-old daughter, Haile, lived out of a car for several months after Darnell got injured working on the I-4 Ultimate Improvement Project. Heat produced from a welding arc and spark damaged Darnell’s eyes rendering him legally blind. He could no longer work or pay his rent so his landlord evicted him.
Darnell, who served five years in the Army, said it took him several months to navigate and get help from homeless organizations, so he and his daughter ended up living in his car. They took showers at the YMCA and received some support from friends who also were struggling. Though homeless, Haile still attended school.
“It was really hard (living out of a car), but I still tried to stay in school and get good grades,” Haile said. “What really helped is hanging out with my friends and my dad having a good spirit.”
Darnell is now receiving disability benefits. He said he needs at least six eye surgeries and can’t afford medical care. He said Supportive Services for Veterans Families (SSVF) got him and Haile off the street and is helping with rental assistance.
SSVF referred Darnell to The Mustard Seed for basic furnishings for his new home.
“The Mustard Seed has a high impact,” Darnell said. “For me, this is a starter kit.”
January 4, 2019
Join us for a party at the only church-owned brewery in the country! Enjoy a variety of 12 beers, wine, cider and non-alcoholic beverages. Food trucks and live music! Family-friendly.
Free admission. 15% of all sales throughout the day to benefit The Mustard Seed of Central Florida Furniture… read more
January 4, 2019
Join us at the World Sports Alumni Bowl Party at Ace Cafe Orlando, Fri., Jan. 25! Over 50 celebrities attending, including Devin Hester, Chris Johnson, Riddick Bowe, Ike Taylor and Brandon Meriweather! Use discount code “mustardseed” for 10% off tickets or “MUSTARDVIP” for 20% off VIP ticket… read more