Photo Story: Former drug dealer draws on past experiences to help others in need

Bennett said the main reason he likes outreach so much is because he can help more people. "I know what they been thorugh and just knowing someone cares gives you hope," he said. Bennett is currently going to college to become a social worker. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett said the main reason he likes outreach so much is because he can help more people. “I know what they been thorugh and just knowing someone cares gives you hope,” he said. Bennett is currently going to college to become a social worker. Photo by Alexis Macklin
As a enagament specialist, Bennett reaches out to homeless individuals to make sure they are getting the help they need. "I don't force people to do nothing," Bennett said. "I am here to help and motivate them. They have to want to do it on their own. You just need to give them respect." Photo by Alexis Macklin
As a enagament specialist, Bennett reaches out to homeless individuals to make sure they are getting the help they need. “I don’t force people to do nothing,” Bennett said. “I am here to help and motivate them. They have to want to do it on their own. You just need to give them respect.” Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett lived on the streets by cooking and selling meth. He was both a drug addict and an alcoholic. He now speaks regularly at the alcholic's annyonmous meetings. He is currently reading Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers, a book about the early history of alcoholics.  Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett lived on the streets by cooking and selling meth. He was both a drug addict and an alcoholic. He now speaks regularly at the alcholic’s annyonmous meetings. He is currently reading Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers, a book about the early history of alcoholics. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett damaged his relationships with his friends and family while he was a drug dealer for ten years, he said. Due to his sobriety, he was able to rebuild his life with new friends and mend his relationship with his family. He decorates he desk with pictures of his new life and his family. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett damaged his relationships with his friends and family while he was a drug dealer for ten years, he said. Due to his sobriety, he was able to rebuild his life with new friends and mend his relationship with his family. He decorates he desk with pictures of his new life and his family. Photo by Alexis Macklin
He did not grow up a Christian man, but once he decided to change is life, he found faith in God, he said. "I found God in a jail cell and I knew I had to change my life," Bennett said. He wears his crosses every day. Photo by Alexis Macklin
He did not grow up a Christian man, but once he decided to change is life, he found faith in God, he said. “I found God in a jail cell and I knew I had to change my life,” Bennett said. He wears his crosses every day. Photo by Alexis Macklin
The campus is currently experincing a procedure change and this is an added stress to Bennett's life. He has to make sure that the new security messures are followed by both administrators and clients of the campus. Photo by Alexis Macklin
The campus is currently experincing a procedure change and this is an added stress to Bennett’s life. He has to make sure that the new security messures are followed by both administrators and clients of the campus. Photo by Alexis Macklin
As part of the new meassure, clients' belongings must be stored in the bag room. Bennett said that this is frusterating to clients. The clients must store everything they own in a room, which is not much, but the campus is still looking for more room to store the belongings. Photo by Alexis Macklin
As part of the new meassure, clients’ belongings must be stored in the bag room. Bennett said that this is frusterating to clients. The clients must store everything they own in a room, which is not much, but the campus is still looking for more room to store the belongings. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett thuroughly explains to clients about the new procedure at least five times a day, he said. Most os the time he just needs to remind them of the new rules. He said most of the administration is curt and disrespectful to the clients about the ne change so he tries to be as respectful and hepful as he can. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett thuroughly explains to clients about the new procedure at least five times a day, he said. Most os the time he just needs to remind them of the new rules. He said most of the administration is curt and disrespectful to the clients about the ne change so he tries to be as respectful and hepful as he can. Photo by Alexis Macklin
In the mornings, Bennett joins his boss Shannon Felty to reach out to the homeless community to offer them services and a bagged lunch. They work together to communicate what services are available to homeless individuals. Photo by Alexis Macklin
In the mornings, Bennett joins his boss Shannon Felty to reach out to the homeless community to offer them services and a bagged lunch. They work together to communicate what services are available to homeless individuals. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett and Felty are helping a Vietenesse man during their routine community outreach on Nov. 17.  They encounter many internationally displaced people who do not understand how to get help and often get lost in the system. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett and Felty are helping a Vietenesse man during their routine community outreach on Nov. 17. They encounter many internationally displaced people who do not understand how to get help and often get lost in the system. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennet and Felty discovered a tent city on Van Buren Street on Nov. 17. They found needles and materials to make meth and crak cocaine. They said drug addicts are most likely to not seek help and need help the most. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennet and Felty discovered a tent city on Van Buren Street on Nov. 17. They found needles and materials to make meth and crak cocaine. They said drug addicts are most likely to not seek help and need help the most. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett found photos at a foot of a matress in the tent city on Van Buren Street. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Bennett found photos at a foot of a matress in the tent city on Van Buren Street. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Felty takes photos on her phone of the photos that Bennett found. They said they will use the photos to cross-references if one of their clients is in the photos. Bennett stacked the photos where he found them afterwards. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Felty takes photos on her phone of the photos that Bennett found. They said they will use the photos to cross-references if one of their clients is in the photos. Bennett stacked the photos where he found them afterwards. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Fabian Bennett is the engagement specialist for Lodestar Day Resource Center in Phoenix looks around an abandoned tent city on Nov. 17. After being a drug dealer for ten years, Bennett reached out for help at the Human Services Campus. He said the services at the campus has given him hope and the opportunity to change his life. Photo by Alexis Macklin
Fabian Bennett is the engagement specialist for Lodestar Day Resource Center in Phoenix looks around an abandoned tent city on Nov. 17. After being a drug dealer for ten years, Bennett reached out for help at the Human Services Campus. He said the services at the campus has given him hope and the opportunity to change his life. Photo by Alexis Macklin
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