SALT LAKE CITY — Meeting your neighbors is one of the most exciting parts about moving someplace new. That’s why John Robb could barely wait for a welcome party Tuesday night. He wanted to show off his new home.
"This place is beautiful. It’s better than the Waldorf or any fancy place,” said Robb.
You would understand why he feels this way if you saw where he was living just three weeks ago.
“My truck,” he said. “That gold truck out there that’s broken down in the parking lot. I pulled in here and my battery died. I have been living in my truck for almost a year.”
You see, Robb was homeless.
“I had lost hope. I really thought I was going to end up checking out,” said Robb.
That changed when he found the INN Between, at 1216 E. 1300 South in Salt Lake City. It’s a hospice center for those who are homeless and need medical care.
For Robb, it was a second chance.
“Well, from where I was to where I am now, I feel like I have a future,” he said with a smile.
It’s a similar story the INN Between’s executive director, Kim Correa, has heard several times.
“It’s very special. I mean, the people we have living here come from a background, come from circumstances that are really, really harsh,” said Correa.
So, Tuesday night, the party wasn’t just for Robb to meet his neighbors. It was for his neighbors to meet him and the 21 other people currently living at the home.
Meeting people face to face and talking to them takes away any mysteries and misconceptions about who is living nearby.
“They brought their children, they were able to meet our residents; they brought them food and they brought them gifts. It’s an incredible gesture,” said Correa.
It’s a gesture Robb doesn’t take for granted.
He said he has seen the way people look at him when he used to try and find a place to sleep. Now, he feels like he doesn’t have to hide anymore.
Not only is he staying at the INN Between, he’s also working there.
“I feel like there’s a light. I have something to go on for,” he said. “It’s a good feeling.”