"I remember the first day I came to Avivo ... When I walked into the art studio, I knew this is where I belonged."
Released from HCMC with the clothes on his back and a bus token, Glenn knew he needed to change. Since then, he’s thrived in Avivo’s ArtWorks program and his career as an artist is just beginning. Read Glenn’s story
“This job changed my life. I’m very happy.”
Hirut emigrated from Ethiopia and is now a mother of five. With help from Avivo, she entered a career and is employed by the City of Minneapolis. Read Hirut’s story
“Without Avivo I probably would have been nowhere. A dead-end job. Possibly back to the streets. It’s kind of amazing when I think about the changes that I’ve made.”
Tommy credits Avivo for inspiring him to transform his life. He’d repeatedly attempted sobriety. He had little success until he entered Avivo’s Institute of Career & Technical Education. Read Tommy’s story
“If you dream, you can have anything. You can be anything. You can do anything.”
With Avivo’s help, Keo signed his first-ever lease on an apartment after experiencing homelessness for 30 years. Avivo is helping him achieve housing stability; something unlike anything he’s ever had in his life. Read Keo’s story
"It's been one big circle, everybody helping each other ... I'm glad to be part of that."
Vincent completed treatment and now volunteers to provide peer support to participants currently enrolled in Avivo’s recovery programs. Read Vincent’s story
“I love being a mom. It’s the best thing ever.”
Antoinette’s drive to find housing stability and to support herself and her daughter led her to Avivo’s youth employment programs. Read Antoinette’s story
“Avivo is helping me grow, and we are growing together … I love the fact I can be with my daughter.”
Theresa is entering a new stage of her life. She’s completing treatment and moving on to Avivo’s short-term career training courses. Read Theresa’s story
"Avivo was able to initially give me a plan, which has led me to find work, and keep work."
Learn about Hachi. He escaped from Djibouti and immigrated to America. He feels it’s his duty to raise his children to contribute positively to society.
“I always think about those lost years … Art gets my mind off of them.”
Learn about Gary. He’s well-known and well-liked in Avivo’s ArtWorks program, a program supporting artists living with mental illness.
"It became real. Life became real."
Learn about Kyle. At 21 years old, Kyle’s already playing the role of family hero for his two kids and their mother.
“I’ve always liked working. I really enjoy it.”
Learn about Paul. He lives with a disability, but doesn’t let that major detail get in the way of a productive work and family life. After a layoff he’s back in the workforce after graduating from Avivo’s IT Support Training program.
“I grew up confused … about life and the right direction to take.”
Learn about Carmen. With Avivo’s help, she’s found housing and is working toward achieving her life goals.
“Avivo gave me the confidence to study and learn, and get into a regimen.”
Learn about John. From a young age he was in and out of jail and treatment centers. He eventually reached a breaking point and decided to turn his life around, which led him to Avivo. Now, he’s graduated from Avivo Institute of Career & Technical Education and has a new job in his new career.
“I don’t have chaos in my life anymore. I feel like I have support.”
Learn about Valerie. After 15 years of self-medicating to avoid dealing with her mental health concerns, she knew it was time to change. Since then she’s worked with Avivo’s mental health counselors and housing support to find stable housing and learn the skills to start a new career.
“I wanted a career. I have a dream to be working in accounting. That’s why Avivo was so important.”
Learn about Rania. She moved to Minnesota from Egypt, where she held a bachelor’s degree in accounting. When her husband was laid off from his job, she took Avivo’s accounting support training to help her re-enter the workforce.
“Being hired at my age … it’s like a second chance. I’m glad Avivo was around.”
Learn about Michael. He’s a military veteran, and struggled to find steady employment after serving in the Vietnam War.
“I started trying to change ... I quit hanging around with my friends and changed my life.”
Learn about Regis. After struggling with alcohol and unemployment, he completed Avivo’s Warehouse Pro training program and is on track for employment.
"If you stay motivated and stay on your feet, you’ll have something to keep you going.”
“There’s no magic solution, you’ve gotta put forth your own effort.” Learn about Santana. She struggled initially to start a new life for herself and her daughter in St. Cloud, but is on track for success.
"I’m so proud of what I can do.”
“I have found community here.” Learn about Cece. She’s a regular participant in Avivo’s community support programs, which help individuals living with mental illness achieve wellness and recovery.
“I know I did much of this work, but it wouldn’t have been possible without Avivo.”
Learn about Diamond, who is overcoming addiction to become a stronger woman and stronger mom.
“Next to coming to America, Avivo was the best thing that ever happened to me.”
Learn about Sameya, a Somali-American mother of three. In 1991, civil war broke out in Somalia, which forever changed her life.
"Parents, siblings, nieces, and nephews…we rely on whoever can work in the house to be able to pay the bills."
Learn about Gao, and how’s she’s overcome the odds to succeed in school and go to college.
Kevin has autism, which makes the nuances of the workplace that might come easily for others, difficult for him.
Learn about Kevin, and how he’s succeeding in a new career.
“I was going through a rebellious phase at 16 … Eventually I got into big trouble.”
Learn about Raygne. She’s worked with Avivo to get past a rebellious phase of her life and create a new beginning.
"I was given an option. Get my life back together or my kids would get taken for good."
Learn about Candace, who is overcoming addiction while also raising two kids.
"I’m an artist. Period."
A growing professional artist, Martha Bird lives with mental illness. She prefers to be known for what she does and who she is, not her diagnosis. Learn about Martha and how she’s raising awareness through her art.
“People don’t understand what a stay-at-home parent goes through in a divorce. I had no income [and needed to support my family].”
Learn about how Peder, a single father of three, quickly learned new skills to re-enter the workforce.
“It’s amazing that I’m doing this. I’m a miracle.”
Learn about Wolfgang, and how after 40 years of struggling with addiction, he is in recovery and getting better.