Simba (street name) met his wife fishing. I love that. Sadly, Simba’s wife was very sick from complications with diabetes. She needed a kidney transplant. Simba’s wife was on the transplant list at USC Medical Center, but while she was waiting for a donor, her health got worse.

The emotional stress of being her caregiver was hard enough; when his wife died, Simba became severely depressed. He started to self medicate with marijuana to help him sleep. This was four years ago, and people’s views of marijuana were much different then. Today, it probably would not even be an issue, but Simba’s landlord used his cannabis use to evict him.

Simba is homeless in Venice Beach, California. He’s a gentle, kind man who should not be living on the streets in his senior years. Elderly homelessness is growing at alarming rates. Boomers are hitting 65 at 10,000 people a day, and many lost everything in the 2008 recession. The coronavirus pandemic is going to make things even worse.

Simba’s first night homeless he slept on a bench at a Metrolink station. He woke up without his wife and best friend, and without a home. A first night homeless is something no one should experience.

Simba’s story is powerful and heartbreaking. I appreciate his candor when I asked him about living homeless as a senior. For many of us growing older, incontinence — the loss of bladder control — is a common and often embarrassing problem. Now imagine living on the streets without bathrooms or privacy, or the ability to change into clean clothes. Elderly homelessness is a serious crisis, and we need you to help take action to end homelessness.

Your voice can help end homelessness. If we do not fix the affordable housing crisis, homelessness will continue to get worse. Click here to tweet, email, call, or Facebook your federal and state legislators to tell them ending homelessness and creating more affordable housing is a priority to you.

More Venice Beach stories:

Los Angeles Homeless Man Works Full Time and Sleeps at Venice Beach

Venice Beach Homeless Man Lives in an RV with His Daughter. Both Have Jobs but Can’t Afford Rent.

Homeless Woman Shares Heartbreaking Story of Life on the Streets of Venice Beach

The Venice Beach People Don’t See: Homelessness in the Rain!

Venice Beach Homeless Woman Sleeps in Front of the Apartment She Rented for 17 Years

#homeless #venicebeach #losangeles

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About Invisible People

There is a direct correlation between what the general public perceives about homelessness and how it affects policy change. Most people blame homelessness on the person experiencing it instead of the increasing shortage of affordable housing, lack of employment, childhood trauma, lack of a living wage, or the countless reasons that put a person at risk. This lack of understanding creates a dangerous cycle of misperception that leads to the inability to effectively address the root causes of homelessness.

We imagine a world where everyone has a place to call home. Each day, we work to fight homelessness by giving it a face while educating individuals about the systemic issues that contribute to its existence. Through storytelling, education, news, and activism, we are changing the narrative on homelessness.

This isn’t just talk. Each year, our groundbreaking educational content reaches more than a billion people across the globe. Our real and unfiltered stories of homelessness shatter stereotypes, demand attention and deliver a call-to-action that is being answered by governments, major brands, nonprofit organizations, and everyday citizens just like you.

However, there is more work to be done on the road ahead. Homelessness is undoubtedly one of our biggest societal issues today and will only continue to grow if we don’t take action now.

Invisible People is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to educating the public about homelessness through innovative storytelling, news, and advocacy. Since our launch in 2008, Invisible People has become a pioneer and trusted resource for inspiring action and raising awareness in support of advocacy, policy change and thoughtful dialogue around poverty in North America and the United Kingdom.


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