Three weeks ago, 22 Richmonders took a break from their everyday lives to experience what it’s like to be homeless in this town.
Among them were teachers, ministers, bankers, and office and health care workers. All are professionals and they each checked their profession, their background and their identity at the door before participating in “Walking in their Shoes,” a homeless simulation hosted by Homeward as part of Affordable Housing Awareness Week last month.
As the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported, the participants struggled with the frustrations of trying to navigate through their town using public transportation, with little money and in a constant search for public services.
As part of the simulation, many of the homeless-for-a-day also kept a journal in which they recorded their experiences. And their journals, which you can view below, tell a similar story.
Hurriedly scrawled, often illegible and frequently emotional, these entries reveal the constant stress, fear, uncertainty and struggle that an estimated 1,150 Richmonders experience every day. Among them are over 100 children.
To learn more about homelessness in Richmond and what you can do to help visit Homeward online at homewardva.org.