So I've got this uncle, I think he's 59. He's been a lifelong drug abuser and alcoholic, but a few years ago he had a heart attack and he quit drinking and he hasn't used drugs in longer than that, about 18 years. He's been clean and sober for 2 years, at least that's what he tells me.
He lost his job a couple years ago and hasn't found work. He's been living with his ex-wife's boyfriend (awkward, I know) and helps out around the house with chores and cooking. But his ex-wife and her boyfriend are getting married, and she'll be moving in and she wants my Uncle out. They're marrying in 2 weeks, so my uncle has 2 weeks to find a place.
I've been trying to convince him since he lost his job to accept help from me in the form of a loan (which would really be a gift, but I call it a loan as he is more likely to accept money as a loan than as a gift) and he's refused it repeatedly. Until today. He said he would accept help.
His situation has me really nervous though. In the past, I knew he had the security of a place to live and that any money I provided would be used towards the end goal of getting a job. He needs some new clothes. He needs a cell phone (so prospective employers can contact him). He needs bus money.
But now with the added pressure of homelessness, I'm a bit stumped. Note, we live about as far apart as we could and still in the same country- he's in WV, I'm in Alaska. I don't have other family nearby that can help him, and I'm not in contact with his ex-wife. He has a son that I've tried to reach out to in the past, but he doesn't know me and so had little to say to me.
I don't know if he can get an apartment without having a job. If he applies for a place, and they see he has no job, will they rent to him? I don't know. I looked to see if there were any rooms for rent in the area and haven't turned up anything. Jobs in his area of skill are also scarce- he's trained as a warehouseman and I only found one job in his area.
I don't want to end up enabling him to start drinking again. I also don't want him to feel a loan from me comes with a bunch of strings and me checking up on him all the time to make sure he's spending the money the way I think he should. He's an adult, and I need to treat him that way.
Has anyone here ever dealt with anything like this? Can anyone offer advice? What is the best way for me to help in a situation like this?
Note that I do have one other relative, my Uncle's sister/my Aunt, who is also willing to help and she's in a position to help more substantially than I can. However, her assistance would have to be funneled through me as he refuses to speak with her for reasons he has never shared with me. In fact, he's pretty much cut off everyone in the family with the exception of myself and his ex-wife and son. My Aunt suspects he's mentally ill, and I suppose that's possible but he does seem to be functional.
At my suggestion he did look into disability (due to his heart attack and his horribly bad back) but he was turned down because he's not currently under a doctor's care.
Any advice is appreciated.