“I’m ready to get back on my feet”

Donald Pounders, a song writer, a IMG_4990father, employed each of which are true, but he most likely would describe himself as simply ‘blessed’.

Pounders, 32, came to The Salvation Army after sleeping on a park bench for three weeks.  He was homeless, in fact, Pounders says “all my life I’ve felt homeless”.  Before coming to The Salvation Army, he spent much of his life in a small town in northern Alabama.

Pounders grew up in Russellville, Alabama.  At a young age, his parents went through a divorce.  The experience weighed heavy on him and as a result, his outlet was writing which evolved into song lyrics.  “Growing up, I started writing poems as my parents were going through a divorce.  Writing out those songs were like counseling to me” said Pounders.  As an adolescent, Pounders had a rocky foundation at home and he found himself with the wrong crowd on occasion.  Pounders recall a life changing moment in his life once he was arrested.  He was 20 years old.

Pounders says during that time period, there was one particular alcohol anonymous meeting where he began writing rap lyrics to a Tupac beat.  “It was during this time, I met a producer.  I got the chance to go into a real recording studio and I liked that feeling” said Pounders.  Pounders felt compelled to write more songs with hopes of entering the hip-hop rap industry.  He figured it could be his ticket to a new way of life.  But the nature of Pounder’s songs was a reflection of his current lifestyle, one that would only cause him to regress.  “I was often writing about drugs and womanizing, but all of that changed once I found God” said Pounders.

After Pounder’s run-in with the law, he decided to move to Mobile where he his mother and sister live.  He met his soon-to-be girlfriend and later mother of his children.  The couple had their share of ups and downs that left Pounders with nowhere to call home, and finally sleeping on a park bench.

The problems Pounders was experiencing reached a crescendo when he realized he was homeless, without his family and had a substance abuse problem.  He sought help and received rehabilitation which helped him find God.  He came to The Salvation Army in January of 2016 and entered the Project ABLE program.  “The Salvation Army is a blessing.  I chose Project ABLE because I’m ready to get back on my feet” said Pounders.  Now he has a steady job working at a local food bank helping other less fortunate children which makes him feel good.  Pounders still writes music but now his songs are focused on more positive things.  “Music wasn’t the problem, what I was talking about was the problem.  So then I gave my music to God and then better lyrics started coming out and that was much more satisfying to my spirit” said Pounders.

“Non-fleeting love is Agape no way there outweighs Yahweh” – Donald Pounders.

Pounders has a five year old son, a six year old daughter and a 12 year old step-daughter.  Within the next 5 to 10 years, Pounders hopes to have happy children, a car and a house to get back his happy family.