“This doesn’t just happen to those people,” said Jennifer Garris. “Anyone can become homeless.”
Ms. Garris has a Masters degree and was a special education teacher for 24 years. But after her husband passed away, she struggled with depression and alcohol use. Soon, she became homeless.
This is a familiar story across the country. No one wakes up and decides “today is the day I become homeless.” People lose stability to the unexpected — medical emergencies, sudden layoffs, or an untreated mental health condition. Yes, access to housing is essential to address our homelessness crisis. But housing alone cannot get everyone back on their feet. Some individuals need support to move forward.