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'I'll always be grateful': Macon man says Daybreak answered his prayer as shelter celebrates 10 years

Tim Almond shared his story at the 10-year celebration Tuesday morning. He told the room he had an addiction to drugs and Daybreak helped him get back on his feet.

MACON, Ga. — For 10 years, DePaul Daybreak USA has been giving Macon's homeless a helping hand.

Tuesday, Daybreak celebrated its 10-year anniversary in a room full of city support.

"Everybody on a first-time basis," Tim Almond said.

Almond shared his story at the celebration Tuesday morning. He told the room he had an addiction to drugs.

"I can't blame nobody else but myself for that. Nobody forced it on me. It was just something I wanted to try and I couldn't break away from it," Almond said.

Almond says his choices landed him in jail, "Speaking with other inmates who basically will never see the outside of the prison walls again."

In jail, Almond said, he decided to give his life to Christ.

"When you pray for something, you've got to listen for an answer, and won't be straight from him, but he'll put people in front of you as your answer to your prayer," Almond said.

He says God put Daybreak in front of him.

"Everybody just showing heartfelt words and giving me encouragement, I'll always be grateful for Daybreak," Almond said.

Sister Teresa Sullivan says since 2012, Daybreak has served over 10,000 people, including Almond.

"Whether people are volunteering, whether they are donors, they are our participants. They are giving me advice. It really is the Macon community that makes Daybreak what it is. I need you and you need me. Our community needs every single person," Sullivan said.

Sister Elizabeth Greim was the first Daybreak director. She says she can't believe it's been 10 years since they opened.

"Somebody came this morning and said, 'I just have to run in because I am running off to my job,' and I am thinking, 'Wow, 10 years ago, I don't think we would've had that,'" Greim said.

In the past 10 years, they've served more than 177,000 meals, provided over 27,000 clinic visits, and helped 463 people find housing and 580 find jobs.

"I believe I would be without a leg right now, because it was really bad. Everybody took concern about it and brought it back to health, and without the donations and volunteers, it wouldn't exist. It would be impossible to keep it running," Almond said.

It's because of the city's support, Daybreak remains an answer to a prayer for so many. 

Almond spent a little more than two years in total with Daybreak. In 2017, he got a job and has been employed ever since.

In June, Daybreak broke ground on an 82-unit housing complex, next door to their site at Walnut and Seventh streets.

"We need solid, affordable housing that you and I would want to live in, so that is my next dream," Sullivan said.

Sullivan says they hope to open the units in about a year.

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