DULUTH, MN-- As KBJR 6 and the Salvation Army work to rescue Christmas for people in need this year, we're also highlighting holiday heroes.
One, works right above the busy Salvation Army Thrift Store in Lincoln Park.
Case worker Shane Colemer is part of the transitional housing team, which gives people a fresh start. It's something he once needed himself.
"I'm actually in recovery myself. Almost 4 years," Colemer said.
He was never homeless, but understands the setbacks addiction can cause.
"Personally, if I didn't have somewhere to go, I probably would have been back to using because it just takes away from everyday life, keeps you numb," he said.
The floor above the thrift store is home to six families, all with kids, and each dealing with their own struggles.
"Historically, with our transitional housing program at least, we've really seen a consistent need," said Rosalyn Horn, Director of Residential Services for the Salvation Army.
It's a need they've seen grow since the start of the pandemic.
Horn said shelter is crucial to anyone's well-being.
"If you don't have a permanent place to live, you really struggle to be successful at any other area in life," said Horn. "You need that permanency, you need that safety and security that comes with housing."
Besides that safety, the transitional housing program also helps the families set and achieve goals, getting them back on their feet.
"To see somebody else that was once like me, bettering their life, just makes it that much better in my eyes," said Colemer.
They help people find a path to success with a roof over their head.
"It gives them hope and hope is a really big thing," said Colemer.
The Salvation Army relies on donations to keep their housing programs going.
We've made it easy for you to donate. Just click on the "Things to Do" drop down menu, and select "Operation: Rescue Christmas".
Don't forget to post on social media and use the hashtag #rescuechristmaskbjr.