I grew up with two deaf parents in tough times in Somerville, MA. As a teenager, I was constantly getting into trouble; stealing cars and drinking too much. I grew up very quickly on the streets. When I went into the military, I grew up the other way; I became a man. While in the military, I became injured. A flying rock hit me in the head and landed me in the hospital for two months. That was the path that started me on my life-long battle with pain medication.

Moving on

When my last of three children left for college it was hard. Everything started to crumble; I started drinking again; I stopped taking my medications; and I lost my steady job of 17 years. I had raised three girls on my own, and when they left I no longer had to be responsible. I had more time to go out and party, and stopped focusing on constructive things. This led to my roommate telling me he couldn’t put up with me anymore.


Brenda Hatch came to Hixon House in August, 2013. After enduring multiple physical, verbal, and emotionally abusive relationships, a divorce left her stranded with a car and 67 cents in her pocket. She arrived at the Haven with no employment and no self-esteem. Her car was repossessed after her acceptance into the shelter, and Brenda…

Photo by Valley News Photographer

Anyone Can Become Homeless

Many people think “I’ll never be homeless”. But on Wednesday, March 5th Haven volunteer and Norwich resident, Judy Pond lost her home to a severe fire with flames estimated to be at least 18 to 20 feet high.  Unforeseen disaster is one of the top five causes of homelessness throughout the US.  Luckily, Judy was…

Homelessness and Furry Friends

James was suffering from severe depression and self-medicating with alcohol. His coping method of drinking caused his roommate to kick him and his dog out of their apartment. His roommate wanted him to leave immediately so James went to stay in a local hotel; but he was quickly running out of money. He turned the…


The lesson I learned at the Haven was when I didn’t think I could take one more step, I forced myself to face the world, smile, and put myself last and other people first…but the first step in anyone’s life is face your woes in life. Go with the kindness you would want from other people and with that in mind doors will open.

Down in Poverty

One day at age 52 I woke up with no place to live, no job, a car that was going to get repossessed and sixty-seven cents! I was devastated. My grandson’s 7th birthday was coming up and Grammie Brenda would have to miss his party. I had no money to get there, let alone to…

In Honor of Rose

We recently received this note from a supporter and friend: The small check for the Food Shelf is in honor of my friend Rose – a 31-year-old single mother who did some gardening for me for a year. She is a great person – smart, sensitive, honorable. She has not been very reliable for many…