Only initials are used to protect these individuals’ identities.
SP is a mother of a one year old son. She was staying with the father’s family for one year until she was kicked out. “Nobody wanted us.” SP’s boyfriend repeatedly abused her physically. She is now attending a GED program and later plans on attending college.
PR’s homelessness occurred when her mother abandoned her after her home went into foreclosure. She was attending college and is a mother of two children. After losing the house and her mother leaving, she sought shelter. PR was separated from her children. She is working on finding a job and reuniting with her children.
MC is a 49 year old male who had been living in a shelter for the last 4 years, since he and his wife separated. Since his housing with the HF (Housing First) program he has been working to get his driver’s license back in order to pursue his CDL. His plan is to go to work.
TP is a 57 year old male who had been homeless for at least 4 years staying in abandoned buildings. He receives Social Security. He had been injured at work, lost his job, and did not have any benefits for 2 years. He has severe chronic back pain. He now has a place where his family can visit him; his goal is to have better health.
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2011 issue of The Wall newspaper.