Vendor Profile: Charles Armstrong

Charles Armstrong. Photo by Street Sense Media.

Charles Armstrong was born March 26, 1957, and grew up in southern Maryland with five sisters and two brothers. He relocated to D.C. in 1979 after his wife got a job as a teacher.  

He describes himself as having been “in and out of jail,” though he prefers to concentrate on the good points in his life, especially his jobs at Whole Foods, Safeway, McDonald’s and in landscaping.  

Armstrong first discovered Street Sense through a friend and was encouraged to join by a Tenleytown vendor.  

He initially became homeless when he lost his job and got involved in “one bad thing after another,” including drugs. However, he is happy to say he currently lives in a one-bedroom apartment and is hoping to get rehired at the Waterfront.  

For right now, though, he said he enjoys working at Street Sense.  

“I love it; it gives me a chance to interact with people on a one-on-one basis,” he said. “I love people, like my mom. She loved helping people. I must have picked it up from her.” 

Armstrong has a daughter, 29, with whom he isn’t in contact. 

He shared with us some of his likes: 

Movies: “Love them.” 

Sports: Washington Redskins 

Food: Lobster. “I can’t always afford it, but I like it.”

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