I found this book valuable. Melissa LaFontaine has written about her experience in being homeless and living in a shelter. She is an intelligent and perceptive writer who paints the picture in some detail. She indicates that the experience is not one without value and discusses the insights concerning human nature and quality. She makes it clear that the system that is in place is not functioning on a level that embraces people from where they are, but from a pre-concluded judgement of where they need to be and what they have to do to get there. If we don’t embrace people in need from where they are then what are we expecting? You may not believe in the same things she does but you can hear the raw honesty and transparency she brings to this work. I value that to no end.
Read this book. Read it and listen to the judgements, pre-conclusions, the “I know what she should have done” voices, the “Well, she coulda, woulda, shoulda, voices, the “Well pull yourselves out of it” voices, and particularly the voice that says well “They did it to themselves” voice. It is a challenging book, not to read, but to listen to your own heart and conditioned mindset that says it has the answers.
Then do something. Take action. Become involved. Personally involved. There are contact sites for a variety of organizations at the end of the book.
A friend asked me if the book is available as an Ebook and the answer is not at this moment. I am hoping that Melissa is continuing to write and hoping for another book. She has a lot to say and does it in a way that speaks to openness and honesty. She is not restructuring or manipulating, and I would expect that from an artist who believes in what she writes.
Melissa LaFontaine Blog and Book