The OCP Blog

To cope with the turmoil and bumps in the road that we go through on a daily basis, it is helpful to remain diligent and develop a way to positively welcome what life puts in our path. Only this way can we go about our day with peace, joy and serenity. It took more than courage for an individual such as Mr. Troy Huskins to be able to open up and share his testimony about how volunteering at OCP changed his approach to daily life.

Born in Wilmington, NC, Mr. Huskins is the second of two boys.  He arrived in Harrisonburg at the end of 2014 in a period when the city was becoming more socially and culturally diverse. When he first stepped onto the premises of our establishment, his first impression of OCP was of an “awkward feeling.” Seeing people of all different backgrounds talking to each other was a shocking scene according to Troy. “At first, I just wanted to come, grab my cup of coffee, eat my lunch, and be left alone,” and that is exactly the first thought that many individuals who walk into OCP have. We seek change this impression by building an atmosphere of love, safety, education, spiritual awareness, healing, and fun.

When I asked him about the difference between the older version of himself and the person he has become at OCP, Troy says, “Now I am doing things I never would believe I would be doing. I never thought that an establishment such as Our Community Place would want my presence and accept me for who I am without judging me.”

This is something most of our volunteers would point out about OCP. We welcome everybody with open arms regardless of your ethnicity, religious background, and political views. “Today, I even have started joining the morning empowerment to check in with all the present volunteers and members, and this would never happen in the past,” Troy said with a shocked but satisfied look on his face.

Mr. Troy Huskins hopes to regain confidence in himself, and his short term goals are to be able to stay alive, be healthy, and get a job and keep it. His long term goals are to get off the street and have a place he can call home. Our volunteers and OCP members are very special individuals. With various innovative ideas such as the Friday Lunch Restaurant and our once a mouth community Night Out event, these individuals have proven that with time, perseverance and great care, they also can be functioning individuals in our society.

Leons Kabongo

Activities & Programming Coordinator