Mario; Las Vegas, NV

Something I have been trying to implement into my way of life recently has been authenticity. In basic terms, this means authenticity in the relationships I form and the love I give. This dramatic change was inspired by Mario, a loving father, and newly homeless individual in the Las Vegas Valley. Never in my life have a met a father who speaks so highly of his son. The love and compassion that comes from his words and actions are easily visible to anyone he chats with. Mario is a 25-year-old Park City, Utah native who has become recently become homeless when his battle with substance abuse and depression defeated him. Unable to hold a job and falling into a deep depression from being unable to provide for his son, Mario turned down a dark path with drugs and alcohol. This resulted in him being unable to pay rent with the streets his only place to call home. For me, imagining Mario in such a dark place seems nearly impossible compared to the happy-go-lucky goofy individual I met at our Priceless Pop-Up Shop.

Mario’s saving grace was the Las Vegas Rescue Mission, a local shelter that actually let the Can You Spare A Story Family come down and pass out flyers for our event. (I am very grateful for this) The Las Vegas Rescue Mission provides a number of services for the homeless population including rehabilitation. Mario is so thankful to the Las Vegas Rescue Mission for helping him reach sobriety. He took part in their rehabilitation program that provides homeless individuals a safe substance-free place to stay, free meals, and training on how to continue life without substance. Mario’s motivation for reaching sobriety was his son with a goal to be the father he dreamt of being. Mario worried that if he didn’t get his life together his son would be embarrassed by him as a father. If he could say anything to his son, he would say that he loves him and he will be home soon.

Words cannot describe how truly grateful I am for meeting Mario. I can honestly say that he has had a profound impact on me and my way of life. I hope and pray for him to return safely to his son and provide the life he wants for him.

Thanks For Reading,

Sydney