A Day In The Life: Victor Hayes, Senior Housing Coordinator
At VOADV, our team members use their unique stories and experiences to serve clients with both kindness and skill every day.
Victor Hayes is the Senior Housing Coordinator for our Safe Return and Navigator programs. This entails serving multiple counties and overseeing housing services that take place at Navigational Resource Centers in Atlantic City, Bridgeton, Camden and Trenton. Mr. Hayes works closely with his staff of housing coordinators to secure both temporary and permanent housing for some of our communities’ most vulnerable individuals.
There is no typical day in the life for our housing team. When an individual needs services, VOADV meets them where they are. Whether someone in need of shelter is referred to us from a police department, the individual goes directly to a Navigational Resource Center, or an IMPACT team member comes into contact with someone who needs housing, Mr. Hayes and his staff are prepared to do whatever it takes to get them placed.
While handling a massive amount of responsibility, Mr. Hayes does not question that this is the job for him. His first position at VOADV was a program assistant at the Aletha R. Wright Center, an emergency housing program for men. He then went on to work in outreach, followed by reentry for Safe Return, and served as the housing coordinator for Trenton before reaching his current position. As a result, Mr. Hayes knows the ins and outs of the housing process and is able to use his previous experiences to not only place clients, but to help them reach their full potential.
“Knowing many aspects of the organization always helps with serving individuals,” he explains. “There was a man we placed in the shelter who came in needing help with substance abuse. Knowing the shelter from my position there, I was able to help guide him through the things he would need to accomplish and the services he would need. A year after the man left treatment, he came back to work for VOADV.”
Stories of Mr. Hayes going the extra mile for clients are not unique. He says his favorite part of his job is talking to people and being able to give them some motivation at their lowest point.
“We work to get clients housed, but it is so much more than that. Sometimes clients need a conversation with someone to tell them ‘you’ll be okay’ and I’m glad to be that person,” says Mr. Hayes. “Sometimes they’re in a position that they never thought they’d be in. Whatever it is, the best part of my job is trying to give them the inspiration to say ‘I might be down right now, but I’m going to get back up.’ I’ve been through a lot, so I give them my testimony. After our conversation, I want the client to know they can handle this.”
Mr. Hayes is a key member of the VOADV family, and we could not be prouder of his hard work and tireless dedication to serving those in need.
When asked if there is anything he wants people to know about his work, Mr. Hayes response exemplifies the type of person he is.
“I want people to know I have an awesome team of people I manage and there are amazing people in all the programs I can always call on. Housing can be challenging, but we’re doing it together.”