Some live in the woods, others in their cars.

Some live in vacant buildings that are not fit to be a home.

They are the homeless of Goldsboro.

The Salvation Army launched the Rapid Rehousing Program last June, designed to help get the homeless into suitable housing. Since then, the program has gotten 76 families into their own homes.

The Cruz family -- 34-year-old Daliris Cruz, her husband, Luis Reyes Gonzales, 38, and their children, Meelijah Rodriguez, 15, and Taina Reyes, 11 -- are recent beneficiaries of the program.

The Cruzes moved to Goldsboro last September from New Jersey, and were staying with Daliris' mother.

"Her landlord noticed that extra family was in her home and said he would evict her if we didn't move out," Cruz said. "We had no other family and were on the verge of being homeless, staying on the street or in our car."

Local shelters were full. But the county gave the family a list of agencies where they might turn for help. One of those was the Salvation Army.

The family was approved for the Rapid Rehousing Program and got a home Dec. 15.

"It means a lot to us," Cruz said. "If it wasn't for the Salvation Army, we would be homeless. It's good help for the community if you really want to move forward and not take advantage of the system."

The program is funded by a grant from the state, said Salvation Army commander Capt. Phillip Stokes. He said the Salvation Army has to match the funding, $64,000 this year. The Salvation Army spends its own money up front and is reimbursed by the state each month.

The Salvation Army's target group at first was men in its homeless shelter. Then it branched out into the community.

Rapid Rehousing Program case manager Jacqueline Caron said the Salvation Army goes by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development standards for homelessness -- be in a shelter, sleeping in a car or on the street or in an abandoned building or place that's not meant for human habitation.

When people go to the Salvation Army, Caron does assessments to find out their situation, how long they've been homeless and other information.

"You don't have to be working or have any money to get into the program," Caron said. "You just have to be HUD homeless and be willing to work and do what you need to do to not be homeless anymore."

The Rapid Rehousing Program helps with security deposits, first month's rent and utilities.

"We rapid rehouse them until they become self-sufficient," Caron said. "I work with them to help them get a job by referring them to vocational rehab."

Rapid Rehousing can help a person or family for 24 months in a three-year period, Caron said.

"But so far, we haven't helped anybody more than six months. Once they get into the program, they want to hurry up and get off it.

"Once I work with an individual who has been homeless and they get into their home, their whole attitude changes. Then they want to go look for a job to keep what they have. They want to better themselves."

Like the couple that had been homeless for years, living in an abandoned building in a park.

"Once they got housing, I connected them with vocational rehab," Caron said. "The woman was working only six hours a week, but finally got 30 hours a week at her job.

"The man did everything he had to do and when he came back in here, he was clean shaven, had a haircut and was wearing a suit. He looked 20 years younger. It has only been less than two months since they got a home and you can see the change in their looks, their demeanor, their attitude."

Stokes said the man was so thankful that he wants to do a fundraiser for the Salvation Army.

Caron can identify with those who come through the Rapid Rehousing Program. She was once homeless herself, with her three children, and finally got out of that situation.

Recently, the Wayne County Public Schools social workers got together to do a project and put together baskets for four of the Rapid Rehousing participants.

"March is social worker month and we always do a project," said Linda Taylor, social worker at Northwest Elementary and Rosewood Middle schools. "This year we thought we would do something with Rapid Rehousing."

So they filled baskets with various cleaning supplies, oven mitts and other household items.

"I'm hoping the baskets will give them a start in their new home and make them feel good about getting out from under the homeless label," Taylor said.