A Life of Service
New VisionHouse of Hope founder and president has dedicated his life to helping others
“I’ll give my last dollar and the shirt off my back to help someone.”
– Charles Culver
In 2003, Charles Culver founded New Vision House of Hope to all a dire need for supportive housing and addiction treatment services in Baltimore. And sadly, many of those problems still exist today.
There is a great need,” Culver says. “At any given time, there could be over 1000 people homeless on the streets of Balti- more.”
But thanks to Culver, progress is being made. Over the last 13 years, New Vision House of Hope has grown to include seven houses and three shelters, including a 40-bed dormi- tory, used as an emergency overnight shelter for women. New Vision House of Hope also others specialized services for homeless Veterans and their families, and an intensive outpatient substance abuse program, all things Culver is proud to other to the community.
That’s a great accomplishment given where I started this organization from,” Culver says
Culver founded New Vision House of Hope in part because of his own battle with addiction. After serving six years in the U.S. Army, Culver “got caught up with drinking and drugging.”
“Before I knew it, I was going into one treatment facility after another,” Culver says.Culver eventually got clean and has now maintained his sobriety for over 24 years. In dedicating his life to helping others, Culver has worked extensively with HIV/AIDS groups and is a certified addiction counselor, facilitating substance abuse groups and helping people move forward in their recovery process.
Although he doesn’t like to dwell on his own past addiction, Culver does try to share his story with clients to encourage them to keep working towards recovery.
“I can relate to my clients,” Culver says.
Culver also makes a point to forge a personal connection with clients, saying many wouldn’t know he’s the organization’s founder and president by the way he interacts with folks. Culver says he eats dinner with clients and when it’s time to work or clean, he’s “in sneakers and jeans cleaning right along with them.”
This time spent with clients is part of Culver’s overall philosophy about providing holistic treat- ment that addresses all of a client’s needs. Culver says he wants clients to feel comfortable and safe, because not only will a feeling of security help them open up during counseling, it will also aid in their recovery by giving them a true support network
Culver describes himself as a “servant” of others, saying he learned from his mother and grandparents about the importance of helping those in need.
“I just love helping people,” Culver says. “I’ll give my last dollar and the shirt o my back to help some- one.”
Whether through direct support or simply thoughts and prayers, Culver says he knows he got where he is today, in part, because people were there to support him. Now, he says he just wants to return the favor and do what he can to improve the lives of others.
“Someone was there to help me, and I believe that it’s just right to be there to help someone else.”
“I can relate to my clients.” – Charles Culver, founder and president, New Vision House of Hope