Identify Society Homeless 366 2-28-2024 day 148, Wednesday, Sad State of Affairs

2-28-2024 day 148, Wednesday, Sad State of Affairs

5:30 a.m. I woke up in the tent. It was cold last night and I couldn’t get my feet warm. Text me a while to roll out of bed, but eventually I get up and I pack all my stuff up to go to work. While I was back in my truck out of my secret parking spot, I got stuck in a hole in the ground while backing out. I had to kick the truck in the four-wheel drive to get it back up the hill again so I could set it straight and back out of the woods. I will say I was less worried than the time I got my little car stuck in the same hole thinking that I might need to have a tow truck pull me out.

6:30 a.m. I arrived at work. Every day’s been an adventure in getting organized, trying to streamline processes for getting people the things they need, like forms of identification, access to resources, access to treatment, just getting a better understanding of where everybody is. I spend the morning getting caught up on paperwork and uploading things into our database.

9:00 a.m. after loading up our homeless outreach Mobile, My colleague and I go out and start meeting with people in the streets. You spend some time along some abandoned railroad tracks and connect with various people living outside there. The city I work in is planning on building a rail trail, so The city’s been active in moving people off of the abandoned railroad tracks. Way property values keep shooting up, this poor city where I do my homeless outreach is beginning to gentrify. From the month I’ve been working here I can feel that the gentrification process is speeding up rapidly.

12:00 p.m. My colleague and I stop for lunch. We’ve been eating Dominican food which is delicious. Lots of rice and greasy meats. I love it and now I’m getting fatter by the day. I’ve also been eating a lot of food at the shelter. Oh and another thing I started smoking cigarettes again. This is a constant struggle for me. I love my nicotine.

1:00 p.m. My colleague and I arrived back at the shelter. The rest of the afternoon is spent filling out paperwork. I cannot divulge information about people that I interact with in the streets, but I will say it is a difficult sight. To know that people have the same faculties as you or I, and are caught in a perpetual cycle of living outside, fighting to maintain an addiction, or avoiding treating a severe mental illness is hard to see. I personally would like it if our society afforded people more opportunities for shelter, as well as more comprehensive opportunities for them to not only be healthy but develop in their own way. The fact that the people have to live outside is very sad.

3:00 p.m. I leave work and I drive to my girlfriend’s apartment. Her and I go out and do some chores, there’s things she needs for her apartment as well as for her car. We don’t get back to a place till after 6:00 p.m. her and I hang out and cuddle for a bit. And then we turn in for the night. What’s even more interesting is that right across the street from our house the social service provider or upwards of 50 people congregate all day long. They live outside the building using drugs, screaming, fighting, my life is saturated with the darker elements of humanity. The streets are now part of me.

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