Rebuilding Life One Piece At A Time

In Trenidad’s 52 years, he built a life for himself—and watched it all fall apart around him. Now, as a member of the Mission’s Fresh Start program, he is committed to putting the pieces back together.

Trenidad was born in 1965, the oldest boy of six children. “We were a very tight knit family,” Trenidad said. “We were very poor, both my parents worked and sent us all to school.” The family attended church every Sunday together.

After graduating from high school, Trenidad went to city college and then got a job with the City of Santa Barbara before leaving to enter the higher-paying construction trade.

After years of focusing on church, school and work, Trenidad’s life took a turn. He broke his back and his neck in an accident at work. Shortly after, he was sent to prison for five-and-a-half years.

After his release, Trenidad didn’t have anywhere to go. His back and neck injuries weren’t treated properly while in prison, so he was unable to reenter his trade. “I came to the Ventura County Rescue Mission by accident,” Trenidad said. “When I got here, I thought, ‘This is where I want to be.’ I was rescued. And restoration began then.”

Trenidad has been using his time in the Fresh Start program to get his life back on track. “I’ve been proactive about my situation,” Trenidad said. “I went to my brothers here at the Mission and I said, ‘These are the things I have to do here and I need some help with this,’ and they said, ‘Hey, you’re ready. You can do this.’”

Trenidad has 38 units of college credit, and he plans on finishing his AA and then getting a bachelor’s degree. He knows none of this would be possible without donors like you.

“It’s been a blessing that you’ve been able to donate to us,” Trenidad said. “It’s all for the benefit of these men here who are trying desperately to change their lives.

“I’m reminded every day: ‘Commit your work to the Lord and your thoughts will be established.’ I say that prayer every day when I get up.”