Finding Help in Hard Times

Photo by Lauren Poole
Photo by Lauren Poole

I started working with Street Sense after losing my job as a hotel maid.

I can clearly remember my last day at the hotel.  I spent the whole day thoroughly cleaning rooms. Then  my supervisor pulled me and one of my co-workers aside and said, “Sorry the economy is low and there is no need for you anymore. We will not pay you for the day so feel free to leave whenever you’d like today. We will call you if things change.”

After that day, I called the hotel back multiple times, but no one ever responded to me.

Unemployment benefits helped me get by for awhile. I was panhandling on the street when  I met Martin, a Street Sense vendor. He told me that I could work and write for this organization and I’d work for myself. I went through training and got hired on that very same day.

Street Sense has taught me how to live and take care of myself when no one else could. Street Sense has been a big help to me and all the other vendors who are struggling in life. It has taught me to be independent and responsible when dealing with homeless rejection, hard times, and the hurt and pain that I so often have to face. People so often turn their backs on the people of the street. It’s so easy to get trapped in your own head when no one is willing to listen, and to feel sad, wondering where your next meal will come from.  Street Sense gives me hope.   I want to thank Street Sense and everyone who made it special to me. Happy 10th anniversary Street Sense, and to all the vendors, volunteers, interns, and full time staff that make it possible.

Vendor Sybil Taylor
Photo by Lauren Poole

Region |Washington DC

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We believe ending homelessness begins with listening to the stories of those who have experienced it.