About

The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty is a leader in the national movement to prevent and end homelessness. Through policy advocacy, public education, and impact litigation, our team addresses the root causes of homelessness and meets both the immediate and long-term needs of homeless and poor people.

To learn more, visit: www.nlchp.org.

2 Responses to About

  1. Mike O'Rourke says:

    Interested in history of the effects of English Poor Laws on todays’ Vets.

  2. Gomez de Maria says:

    Excerpts from an ABC News interview later this afternoon. Tune in. (Sara Colby, ABC News)

    “People ask me all the time, “Do you feel limited by the mistakes that you have made in the past?

    ‘Well, certainly there are times that I feel that way, but I can never let that stop me from trying to achieve what I want to achieve.’ … I live in a world of possibility!

    I learned a long-long time ago… nothing and no one could stop me from achieving my dreams . . . but me. If I ev
    er give up, I may as well dig a hole and jump in.

    Let’s face it… in 1977 I was homeless Marine Corps Veteran, living on the corner of 7th street and Broadway in downtown Los Angeles in a cardboard Maytag box. I knew then, that no one was ever going to help me no matter how many times I begged for help and spare change. If I were ever going to make anything out of myself, I was the one who had to break out of my self-imposed funk and get my life together. And you know what? I did!

    How many people do you know with barely a GED who has been able to become the Chief Executive Officer of over fifteen of America’s most well known corporations? To be able to achieve this kind of success without any formal academic training is next to impossible.

    Everything I learned was from reading hundreds of books and when the Internet was invented, I spent hours learning everything I could like a sponge.

    Therefore, I tell people… If you dream it . . . YOU CAN BECOME IT.

    I was able to turn myself into anyone I wanted to become. I studied, I focused, I memorized, I practiced and then . . . I went out into the world and I DID IT!

    I do not get why we have so many unemployed people in America. If I had fifty homeless people in a room for one month, I promise you, they would not be homeless much longer. Now times that by thousands, and maybe we would make a small dent as to how many people are on the unemployment rolls.

    I laugh… there are so many non-profit agencies out there making millions in donations, all promising to help get people off the streets and into well paying jobs. It is literally a get rich quick gimmick. A farce.

    The same people who are making these statements are the same ones paying themselves thousands of dollars each year for so called hard work and “success”. It is a get rich scheme that has gone on for years and I am amazed that it has not been stopped yet. Now do not get me wrong, there are hard working non-profits out there do great work. However, there are merely one out of one hundred agencies that are doing so. It is shameful.

    I can make you this very clear promise. Give me 50 or 100 homeless people for one month who are seriously wanting to get their lives together and lead a decent life, and I will give you back the same number of highly trained; well qualified; eager and ready highly motivated people; who are employed in decent jobs that pay well; have a place to live, money in the bank, and look like they just walked off the pages of GQ Magazine.

    There is no question this is possible. How do I know this? Because I proved it, not only in my own life, but I prove it every time I am able to put together a class and I am able to commit the time necessary to do it. If I can do this… then all of these so called, get rich non-profit organizations can do it as well. The difference between the non-profits and my program is that there is no fraud.

    Go ahead… test me. Let me pick 50 homeless people off the streets of Los Angeles, and I will show you what I can do. It is literally an amazing transformation.

    You see in order to help others; you really do need to have lived or walked in their shoes for a while, in order to truly understand what they are going through.

    I know what it is like to be living in the cold in a cardboard box on a street corner of Main Street USA. It is not a very nice experience. Too many Psychologist and Sociologist claim to be able to “fix the people and the problem,” yet never once have they lived similar lives as their clients. Until they do, then and only then will they truly understand.

    You can read all the books and see all of the movies about life on the streets, but until you have lived it… you will never ever really know how difficult it really is.

    As I always say, we have professors and scholars lecturing in the halls of Harvard and UCLA all professing great academic knowledge. I thank them for their many accomplishments. However, they may have the greatest in BOOK or academic sense, but they seriously lack in “common practical sense”. In my view, in order to be a very successful professor, you actually need to have experienced both.

    I made myself successful, because I refused to allow society to tell me that I was all washed up. A failure. A has been. I got angry and upset each time someone told me when I was homeless to “Get a Job.” However, you know what? I never thought I would ever say this, but I thank those people for telling me this. Because it was what I actually did. And I did it well”

    (You can catch more of this television interview “OUT OF THE SHADOWS on your local ABC News and ABC affiliated cable station. Be sure to check your local listings)

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