Ryan was barely able to keep his eyes open as he ate his lunch at the homeless shelter. He bought his shoes from his friend recently.
What is your biggest struggle with poverty on a daily basis?
“Shelter. I’ve been living on the street on and off for about five years. Sometimes I crash at a friend’s place. Other times I sleep outside. Park benches; wherever looks comfortable. I’m never afraid of getting hurt. Just of getting my stuff stolen while I sleep because it’s happened so many times. Everything I own is with me and then, everything is gone and I need to start acquiring again.”
“I rely on this place quite a bit. For food. For clothing. I’ve heard I can sleep at the Mission if I show up after 9 pm but I prefer to be on my own.”
What would you like people to know about living in poverty?
“Poverty’s like a rut, I guess. Not easy to get out of…my situation has been downhill since I broke up with my ex. People can get complacent with living like this.”
“I still enjoy life and I feel it’s worth living. I have hope for myself to eventually get out of this rut on my own. I never planned on being like this but I plan on getting out of this situation.”