©2019 by Real Change for the Homeless.

Understanding Homelessness Today

It’s been an honor to work with RCH and contribute whatever means that I can in such a meaningful movement. I’ve been blessed to have been part of a few of their activities, and my involvement has allowed for me to take a step back and this time, not judge homeless characters, but develop a deeper grasp toward this social problem.

Shelter, or having a home is in part of the fundamental tier in the hierarchy of Man’s needs. Shelter is the very basic biological and physiological need of man, along with air, food, drink, sleep and other physical needs.

Needless to say, without having satisfied this first tier, how can one progress to the rest of the needs, such as Safety, Belongingness, Self-Esteem, and on to the highest which is ‘Self-actualization.’

This was a photo during an immersion I joined with Daniel Lock, Nery Haro and Edward Wilmot. It was a light afternoon where we exchanged snacks, stories and laughs. We were glad to have made them smile!

So first let us strive to define and understand what Homelessness is all about. Let me start by sharing the three types of Homelessness, which are Chronic, Transitional and Episodic, as we then try to find ways on how each can be addressed.

First is Chronic, which means ‘Homelessness for a longer period of time.’ This is observed among older and/or physically incapacitated people who are unable to fend for themselves, let alone pay rent or monthly amortization. With the availability of shelters in Nevada, or in general, the entirety of the United States in America, chronic homelessness may not be as prevalent or well, chronic as sooner or later, I believe that these people may be able to find themselves a home.

From longer, we move to the shorter version, known as ‘Transitional Homelessness,’ which applies to those who are homeless just for a while, following perhaps a major catastrophic event, a hurricane, and believe that those who’d find themselves in this situation still has the drive to get out of it. It may be hard and daunting, but they certainly won’t allow themselves to remain there for good.

And this leads us to the third type which is Episodic. This can be defined as something like ‘Transitional,’ because they go in and out of homelessness, but then on the foreground is the mentality that they won’t really be able to make it out of there for good. The people in this sad situation may not even know that they are in a very sad situation. They’d find themselves going in and out shelters, sleeping in parks, moving to another parks, and this is mostly due to substance abuse, lack of support from family members and in most cases, mental illness.

If you are reading this, at the comfort of your home or office, via your Mac or an expensive, top of the line Smart phone, you probably cannot relate, as could I, back before I joined an immersion with some of the RCH gang led by Daniel Lock. And some of my friends (as I had been too) would even be quick to criticize that “oh, those homeless guys are just lazy or stupid,” but then really, the issue at hand goes far beyond that. And I think that is fine. But if you’re reading this, then you’ve taken the first step to learning more about, and probably you’d soon get out of your comfortable posh office or expensive home laden with fine furniture and possible join us today!



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