More Neighborly Love –
December 23, 2019 – Midnight Mission spokeswoman Georgia Berkovich hugs a man after a shelter graduation event. It’s not uncommon to see Berkovich clapping, dancing and getting misty-eyed, as she did when a group made up primarily of homeless singers finished rehearsing the “Hallelujah Chorus.” … “They (homeless) are you and they are me,” Berkovich said, becoming choked up. “They were full of hope, wonder, just as you and I are, and were. And they’ve have had horrific things happen.”
The horrific things began happening to Berkovich when her father died. “I was 6 years old, and after I started to run wild,” she said.
Berkovich revealed she hid her demons so well she became sixth-grade class president at her elementary school in the Los Angeles suburb of La Crescenta. She said while her mother worked three jobs, she started hanging out with the older kids, smoking and drinking. “Then I started to get involved in other kinds of drugs and things I that I swore I’d never do,” Berkovich continued. She plunged to rock bottom after well over a decade in a drug and alcohol blur. “I had my last suicide attempt at 23 and then I started smoking crack and then it got worse.” She recalled being fired from her job and evicted from her apartment. Berkovich said she would have wound up on the streets, but her best friend’s parents gave her a room in their home. The friend then got her to call a recovering alcoholic, who drove her to a 12-step meeting in a room filled with strangers and promise. “I have been sober for 26 years and I have a big beautiful life,” she said.