Monday, January 30, 2012

I Wish My book Of Life Was Written In Pencil … There Are A Few Years I Would Like To Erase.

I was up before dawn very ill. I am a nervous wreck. My boss cannot afford to keep me on, or face the escalating bills of maintaining a home and I am homeless - unable to just walk away and find work elsewhere. Neither can I recover my career without a home and barn. I know that my homelessness is much easier than those who don't have food - but the stress of trying to get through frigid cold weather, of not knowing if you will die homeless, this instability is daily horror. Far more than I could ever put into words.

It follows you into your sleep, making rest virtually impossible to get. It chips away at you, eroding your self confidence, hope, and self worth. Last night it followed me and woke up with me, and this morning I was feeling the pain.

Nonetheless, the day turned into such a beautiful day it was more like spring than winter. In the upper 50's, sunny.. blue sky as only the mountains can produce.

I would have managed to get more work done had we access to water. NO water. I sat looking at the washing machine dreaming of clean blankets... but there was NO water.

The water was finally restored after 1 pm and that left me rushing trying to get done what I intended to get done earlier in the day. The washing. My bosses first... then my own. I never noticed how dirty the hoodie was that I have been wearing for the past week, until I put it in the washing machine and watched the water turn murky grey.

THIS is homelessness. It's dirty. It's so much dirt you think you will never be clean again. The days when you took your clothes off and put them in the dirty hamper are over. The nights are so cold you dare not take clothes off, and without somewhere to keep clean clothes - they all get dirty even if you are not wearing them.

All across the United States their are millions of people experiencing the same hardship and heartbreak that I am experiencing, and some far worse...
From "The Hub Of Hope"...

Homeless Counts Should be Counting Backwards

One, two, three…

In the darkness of early morning, the counting can be monotonous, an exercise that almost puts you to sleep. I have written before about the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) mandated homeless counts that occur throughout this country during the month of January.

Municipalities have to count their homeless population at least every other year, or they will lose their HUD funding. Some cities count every year.

Twelve, thirteen, fourteen…

Counting how many people are languishing on our streets, however, is good. How can we address a sad human tragedy without knowing the extent of the problem? How can we know if we are successfully reducing the number of people on our streets without regularly assessing our work through counts?

Counting makes those who spend taxpayers’ money accountable. When our country spends a couple of billion dollars per year on addressing homelessness, we should expect to know if this investment is working.

Thirty two, thirty three…

But I know by experience that counting sleeping heads in the cold chill of darkness, with their bodies covered by ragged blankets or hidden in tents, is not an exact science. It is more like counting sheep. Hidden sheep. In fact, counting calories is a much easier task then counting the thousands of people hidden in the crevices of this country’s landscape.

Was that a body bundled into a blanket under that bridge, or just some tossed away old clothing? Are there three people sleeping in that van, or just one? Inexperienced volunteers are not asked to wake people up, just to count bodies.

Eighty four, eighty five…

We really need to be counting stories, not heads. If our community is going to mobilize hundreds of good-hearted volunteers to wake up at four in the morning to count our homeless neighbors, we really should count how many heart-wrenching stories are on the streets.

Excuse me, but can I ask you a few questions that could help us provide you housing… How long have you been living on the streets? Do you have any health issues? Are you a former armed services member? How old are you? Where is your family? How did you end up on the streets?

One-hundred one, one-hundred two…

Imagine if successful entry into a hospital was based on how well a person can navigate difficult entry procedures. Those people who are healthiest– perhaps they just have flu symptoms or have enough money to hire someone to help – would access healthcare first. A very sick person with cancer and no money would never be able to get in.

Sometimes, the homeless service world is the same way. We help those who can access our services, or who can be easily housed, first. With counting homeless persons, and the pressure of reducing the number of people on our streets, we are tempted to find easy success, those homeless persons who can navigate the difficult procedures of being housed.

One-hundred twenty three, one-hundred twenty four…

But as soon as we start discovering people’s stories, as soon as we ask questions that reveal personal, heart-wrenching struggles, the temptation of finding easy success disappears, because we want to help the most hurting.

The most sick. It is just our compassionate tendency to first help the person who is injured the most.

It is just natural to help the most vulnerable people on the streets. We really should be counting stories, not just counting heads.

One-hundred sixty five, one-hundred sixty six…

Actually, we really should be counting the number of people we are housing.

Just imagine if rather than waking up at four in the morning to count sleeping sheep on our streets, we are waking them up to listen to their stories. So that we can prioritize the most hurting people on the streets and give them an apartment that is waiting for them.

Wait a minute. That imaginative activity is already happening. Cities and communities around the country are part of a movement to house 100,000 of America’s most vulnerable homeless neighbors. Volunteers are waking up early to create a vulnerability index that prioritizes who will be housed first.

Now, that is the kind of count that really counts. In a way, they are counting backwards, until the day there are zero Americans sleeping on our streets.

Three, two, one, zero…

There has to be someone related to Robert &Sylve Huckins must have some means to reach them, if it be Michael Huckins, Dr.Kenneth Ogilvie ( Diana Huckins? Dominic Huckins? Malcolm Huckins? ) or Patricia Ogilvie-Huckins and get them to return ALL of the money they stole from us so that I can buy a home and get our lives back. I am begging anyone in this family for help.

I don't believe I have EVER witnessed any none vio
lent crime that can be as devastating as stealing someone's home. I am walking in Dorothy McKeevers footsteps, day by day, month by month, year by year.

Liam Griffin, I sat in your law office with two witnesses as you gave me your promise, your guarantee, that our money would be returned before harm came to us.

Patricia Ogilvie-Huckins you were present the day I signed contract with your son. You walked out of the kitchen with Sylve Huckins and your son introduced me to you. He told you that I was the British horse trainer he had told you about, the one he was going to build the home and barn for. Why didn't you say something? There may be a rational and reasonable explanation but I have spent over 3 years, homeless, not understanding it. I understand it even less knowing that though I was a total stranger, both Dorothy McKeever and Sally Canning you KNEW, and you knew what your son had done to them and others.

Dr. Kenneth Ogilvie, I contacted you and simply asked f
or a reference, not knowing that Robert Huckins was your cousin. Robert Huckins had just stolen over $30,000 from the domestic violence shelter, HEAL, yet everyone was trying to hide it. There was a history of stealing large amounts of money. $65,000 PLUS from Nancy Canning. $89,000 PLUS from Dorothy McKeever, $45,000 from Francis McKinney. The list just goes on and on and on.
Because of Robert Huckins I ended up paying
$140,000 to be homeless.. sat in the cold, emotionally, physically and financially broke. In the middle of a recession, with no way to recover the stolen funds.

Today Robert Huckins has his own home...
He also has OUR home.....
He also has a lot of people's money...
And his freedom.

Women are not banks or loan institutions. Women should not be the source of a retirement fund for people who don't want to do an honest day's work for an honest day's pay. Holding women hostage while playing with the judicial system, a horrendous game of cat and mouse extending YEARS, with the victims whose very homes, families and stability are in jeopardy is cruelty, as cruel as a physical beating. It is financial and emotional RAPE. Homelessness is not justice. It is a slow, painful death.
Please, I beg with everything I have within me, pl
ease convince Robert Huckins to stop this torture and return the building fund he stole from us so we too, can have a home.

Relevant pages:
10/06/pen-is-mightier-than-sword.html is the lesson: never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy. ~ Sir Winston Churchill