COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Improving police and community relations, one stroke at a time was the goal of Columbus Police Cadets who helped those living at a homeless transition house paint their rooms on Saturday.
Managers at the complex say a simple act of kindness can go a long way for those looking to reclaim their dignity and get their lives back on track, and that's exactly what 40 residents of the Grace House project in Columbus got.
"I got out of jail and didn't have anywhere to go, and Jeff and the chaplain at the jail hooked me up here at the Grace House," said Truitt Robinson, a 27-year-old resident.
The Grace House is a community that is a saving grace for up to 48 men at a time as they help the homeless and fresh out of jail get back on their feet.
"Our culture is all about saying yes to men. Trying to get the men here to understand that you can be comfortable, have the structure that we provide here, and go out, get your job, save your money," said manager Jeffrey Mackey.
On Saturday cadets with the Columbus Police Department helped the residents paint their rooms and spruce up the property. It came as an initiative to grow personal connections between police and the community- while giving the residents a boost of dignity in their home.
"A lot of us that go through this struggle, we learn that not having a permanent address kind of hinders you in getting a job, ID, or anything that you need. So, having a permanent place that you can have, that you can lay your head and you can be comfortable, know all your stuff is going to be in one place, nobody is going to take it," said Mackey.
The shelter provides a room for two men to share, along with food and guidance which is something that Robinson says many go without, and often end back in jail or on the streets.
"Not know what to do, and be homeless and not have any of theses resources, not know about the Grace House and, you know, they end up getting back in trouble. The Grace House helped me stay out of trouble and I've been looking for a job," said Robinson.
Many of the residents worked alongside the future officers, and they all celebrated with a big lunch after the work was done.