Thursday, October 21, 2021

The Times’s Playbook tells the story of a homeless man who began climbing the ladder to success

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Janero Bruml is no longer homeless. He is safe, and confident. And he is just one of many Los Angeles-area volunteers who have helped sustain this young man’s recovery.

After decades of an antisocial, noncommunicative life, Mr. Bruml shot to fame in 2016 when The Los Angeles Times’s Playbook series profiled him as a problem-solver working in a group home run by a nonprofit organization. He’s since become an ambassador for Volunteers of America Los Angeles’s domestic violence and homeless prevention services.

Mr. Bruml is one of 25 former or current homeless men and women with a “prior history of abuse and homelessness” who have been paired with peer mentors who can help them build life skills, such as personal hygiene and resume-building, and become independent after they leave the shelter system, according to Jenny Ceballos, a staff member at VOA.

“It’s really amazing how in this building and in these beds, there is hope,” Ms. Ceballos said, referring to the VOA’s We Reach Youth Program.

“When you’re homeless, you’re not ever ready for an apartment,” she added. “You’re never ready for all the things that come along with moving into your own space.”

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