Joe has lived and worked at Bluff Lake Apartments since the beginning. Six years ago, his first day on the job happened to be the day that he moved in as a resident as well. “Everyone knows me here — who I am and what I do — the kids like to call me Mr. Joe. I’m glad I live here, it’s a nice environment, nice building, it’s beautiful,” he says when asked what it’s like to work and live at one location.
His journey to this north Denver, CO community wasn’t easy. “I was laid off a lot when the economy was bad, got behind on bills. Eventually, it caught up to us, and we had to move out and lost our house, so we had to move into an apartment.” Joe was working various temp jobs all over the city, and life was stressful with sporadic employment, costly commutes, and a family to support. Money was tight.
He was thrilled to get the opportunity to work for Mercy Housing as the maintenance supervisor. Not only did it give him full-time, stable employment … it gave him a home. Housing was part of his employment package, and it’s made an incredible impact on him, his family, and residents.
“I just want to keep the community safe — we have some single parents and I try to look out for them. I’ve seen a lot of good that this place [Bluff Lake Apartments] has done for people. Some were homeless or came from a bad situation or abusive environment. Moving here has allowed them to get on their feet financially, physically, and emotionally. It’s helped us [his family] a lot too, it’s easier for me to take care of my family here with my job being the same location as my home” — Joe.
Joe is a loving father, hardworking employee, and a coach. He coaches his sons and another resident in boxing to instill a sense of discipline and focus in their lives. His son will soon be trying out for the Olympic qualifiers. “Mercy Housing has been great about giving me time to go to tournaments, so I can support my kids to succeed.” — Joe