Letter to the Editor logo

My name is Nathan Hull. I am 35 years old. I’ve been struggling with addition since my early teens and have been in and out of jails and institutions most of my adult years.

I’ve been out of prison since December 2015 and plan on staying out. After being in jail more times than I can count – or, to be honest with you, so many times that I just lost count – and in prison five times, I knew I had to change. Something just wasn’t working for me.

Four drug treatments later and a lot of incarcerated years, I for sure needed to try something different. I got fortunate. After being released for only a week, I turned in one job application and was interviewed on the spot. During that interview I was asked if I could start my employment that very day. I felt blessed. I was doing good for four or five months, working every day, saving money, staying clean and I actually felt happy. Everything seemed perfect and that’s when I ran into old friends that still used. It was once again a struggle when it came to working and staying clean. At one point I had my own two-bedroom house and then I was barely hanging on to an efficiency apartment. Five jobs later and I was currently at that time unemployed. I knew I had to do something.

Finally coming to my senses and realizing I was having problems managing my own life, I made a phone call to King House and asked if I could come there. During my stay at King House, I was helped in many ways. They provided me with an enclosed environment away from drugs, for which I am so thankful because I really needed that – what I call a “safe house.” The King House provided me with shelter, substance abuse treatment programming, knowledge of resources in the area, doors to job opportunities through Iowa Works or Iowa Workforce Development and an opportunity to get financial help in a lot of areas – but most of all a good general sense of direction in getting clean and staying off the streets. It was the help that I needed.

There are a lot of positive life-changing opportunities there. It was Sept. 3 of this year I made that phone call to King House. I was homeless, jobless and still struggling with addiction. On Oct. 15 I left the King House with a job at Nora’s as a dishwasher and my own apartment. I am currently enrolled at Clinton Community College waiting to start school in January to get a degree in Business Management.

I try to do volunteer work in my spare time and would like to give back to the community. I just want to say that there are struggling addicts out there and that there is help. There are resources for homeless people and struggling addicts. Don’t give up. There is help.

Nathan Hull, Clinton