"Even though I struggled, I didn't drop out. I graduated high school," Peak said.
Jonathan Peak lives in Minvilla Manor. He graduated from Fulton High School in 2009 and played on two state champion basketball teams.
After graduation and a stint in the job corps,he struggled to find a job.
"I was staying with friends. I was going house to house," he said.
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Now, he's lived in the same place since 2011. He has a part-time job as a case manager and a community to support him.
"Without those resources and without those expectations, to be honest, I would be out there," Peak said.
He's even working toward moving into his own independent apartment. And -- he says it's thanks to Volunteer Ministry Center and an approach to homelessness called "Housing First".
Minvilla Manor, a 57-unit permanent supportive housing development, opened in 2010. It cost more than $7 million to renovate the historic building. That's $123,000 per apartment.
It costs $435,000 a year to run the development. That's about $635 per unit.
There are nearly 400 units of permanent supportive housing in Knoxville.
The experts say those 400 units just aren't enough.
"That's where we are facing a critical shortage, we don't have enough housing," Nooe said.
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Since Minvilla Manor opened 8 years ago, the city says it hasn't seen any new permanent supportive housing developments on that scale.
Several smaller facilities have opened and the city has added money to an incentive program for developers who want to build affordable housing.
"The city is not going to be able just entirely fund a development on its own. But, we can put resources in that will close gaps," Dunthorn said.
For Jonathan, his 7-year stay at Minvilla is a typical one. About half of the people who live there have been there since it opened 8 years ago.
The facility has several requirements: everyone there must be experiencing chronic homelessness, they have to have at least a moderate disability, and they all pay rent based on their income. The minimum rent is $50 per month.
Unfortunately, not everyone can get in.
"You've got to fit in that sweet zone where you don't make enough to be not eligible for the programs, but just make enough that you can afford what is available," Knoxville Police Officer Thomas Clinton said.
Minvilla includes 57 of the nearly 400 units of permanent supportive housing in Knoxville.
That breaks down into several programs targeted at different needs: Veterans, homeless people, or people with various illnesses.
"A theme of our community plan to address homelessness is that it's the community's problem and it's going to take all of us to solve it," Dunthorn said.
The given names for these two homeless advocates are Roosevelt and Carl. "Street Angels" might be more fitting.
These two men have spent the last 20 years working to change lives on the streets. Their given names are Roosevelet and Carl but 'Street Angels" might be more fitting.
Both have worked daily on the streets of Knoxville for two decades.
“I love helping people. I’ve always been a people person. I enjoy helping people I can help. There’s a lot of people in situations where we can find ways to get them out of being homeless and that’s our job to basically do that.”
They make up part of the frontline team trying to help homeless people.
"I've been on the street, on and off for 43 years," a homeless man named Country said.
Country is his street name.
This is Country. That's his street name. The Knoxville native admits his mistake and served four years in prison for a vehicular homicde felony charge. Now, he faces a life sentence on the streets.
He says his exact income is $650. He can't afford to live anywhere but on the street. Public housing isn't an option.
CAC workers say he applied for KCDC Housing but he has a felony for vehicular homicide and KCDC wont allow him to get housing.
The Knoxville native admits his mistake and served four years in prison for the charge. Now, he faces a life sentence on the streets.
"I'm tired, I'm really tired of living this life," he said.
And hundreds of others are facing the same situation.
"It's just a part of the way things are here in Knoxville. That's just the way things are," a CAC worker said.
Country says this wasn't part of his plan.
“If I could just get out of this situation, I wouldn’t have no drinking problem. Most of the people that do drugs, to live this life is to ask it. To survive it, you gotta have something to take your edge off," he said. "I wanted to grow up and become a truck driver, but now I’ve been out here for so long, it became a part of my life.”