When Michael first moved to Washington in the late 1980s, his life was in shambles.
"I was living a life of ill-repute and degradation," he says. He found himself alone, homeless, and carrying the weight of his addictions on his shoulders. Three thousand miles away from friends and family, Michael wondered if he would ever get off this merry-go-round of desperation and humiliation.
After being diagnosed with throat cancer in 2014, he joined LIVESTRONG at the YMCA, for members living, coping, and healing from cancer. There he was able to share his story of hope through challenging seasons of his life.
"The next step in my physical, spiritual and emotional healing was getting to volunteer with the Y," said Michael. He now serves as the Tacoma Center Y's volunteer chaplain, offering a safe perimeter outside and beyond the church walls to bring "healing, restoration, and deliverance to God's children."