Arithomer, 31- Washington D.C.

“My life has been an uphill battle. I was put in the foster care system when I was a toddler. It is not an easy life when you are that young living with different people all the time. It felt like torture. I was abused and beaten with coffee mugs, wooden sticks, you name it. I was almost adopted once but I refused because they wanted to send me to an all boys boarding school. Sometimes I think that may have been what was best for me.”


“I used to work and walk, but ten years ago I caught a rare disease called Avascular Necrosis. It’s most common among athletes because they take steroids. I use to take a type of steroid for my asthma so that’s where the doctor’s thought it came from. It stops the blood circulation around your hips so I can walk for about a minute before I have to sit down. When I was first diagnosed, it became so painful where I couldn’t even go to work or walk anymore. I went from walking with crutches to a cane, to a wheelchair. After that, I couldn’t really find jobs that would help me. I ended up homeless, in the shelters. There’s just really no places for a person in a wheelchair to work. Even though I do get some help from the federal government, that is nothing compared to the money you could make from paycheck to paycheck, especially with how expensive DC is, and I can’t really work any of the jobs offered by the shelters.”


“Sometimes I feel judged as a homeless person but I can’t let it get to me. Everyone has a gift, I sing gospel for example. A lot of people just go through bad circumstances in life and never get to use it. 50% of adolescents aging out of foster care will be homeless within the first six months.” (This is true- Covenant House, 2015). I guess I’m one of those statistics. You never know where people came from and you can never be judgemental when you’re asking for help. In spite of it all, I tell myself there’s going to be a better day.”

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