AUSTIN (KXAN) — As work to get people off the streets and into permanent housing continues, The Other Ones Foundation is working to get people who are experiencing homelessness stable jobs.
“This is Austin, this is where we reside,” said Nelson Muriakiara, who is currently is employed by the TOOF.
He takes pride in the city he’s lived in for many years and wants to help people get a job and a place to live.
“I am getting to work with people just like me, fellow veterans, people who are going through the same thing I am going through who are coming off homelessness,” Nelson said.
During his time spent cleaning up homeless encampments, he says he finds time to connect with the people and explains how TOOF can help.
“It is a stepping stone, a jumpstart,” Nelson said.
“The workforce first program is an alternative work program where people experiencing homelessness are offered the opportunity to work in service of their community performing environmental cleanup,” said Max Moscoe, who works for TOOF.
Since the program started in 2018, it has helped more than 90 people get into permanent housing. Moscoe said the road to permanent housing is a long process and getting a stable income is just one of the many steps.
“We have also paid out over a million dollars in earned income to people experiencing homelessness,” Moscoe said. “And we have moved over a million pounds of trash out of green spaces in Austin.”
Employees receive $15 an hour for their work. They also get assigned a case manager to help them get back on their feet.
“It is a good opportunity,” Nathan said.
The Other Ones Foundation says they are working on expanding the program soon.