Continuum of Care, Inc.’s mission is to enable people who are challenged with mental illness, intellectual disability, and/or co-occurring substance use disorder, to rebuild a meaningful life and thrive in the community.
Shumra started to experiment with drugs and alcohol at twelve years old and was kicked out of high school in the 10th grade because he was arrested for possession of a firearm in a motor vehicle. It was his first run-in with the criminal justice system, and it was also when he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. After he was released from prison, his life took a downward spiral and he was in and out of jails and institutions.
In 2009, Shumra was arrested because of an incident during a manic episode. He was placed with a jail diversion program that referred him to Continuum, and that’s when his homelessness to prison cycle ended.
At Continuum’s Brownell Street house, a supported housing program for persons with history with the criminal justice system, he was able to obtain employment, further his education, remain clean and sober, and stay connected to mental health treatment. After a year and a half, he transitioned back to the community and moved into his own apartment.
Shumra has successfully maintained his sobriety and housing since 2010. In 2014, a statewide campaign to end homelessness selected him – out of thousands of people who were nominated – to receive an award that recognized his commitment to supportive housing advocacy, leadership skills, and his efforts to better his community.
He is currently employed as a Recovery Support Specialist, helping others struggling with mental illness to move forward in their road to recovery. People who encounter Shumra at work are always saying how kind, gentle and helpful he is towards clients and staff. He loves his job because it allows him to help people rebuild their lives like Continuum has done for him.
Won’t you consider helping us break the institution to prison cycle for someone like Shumra?