Another installment of "The Invisible Ones" of Washington, DC
Anne is a 40 year old woman who has been living on the streets of Washington, DC for a little more than six years. I met Anne outside of a fast-food shop near the Dupont Circle Metro. She was sitting on the sidewalk counting the spare change she had accumulated in her plastic panhandling cup. When I stopped to speak with her she asked if I could help her out as she didn’t have enough money to buy something to eat. I told her I would do that in exchange for a photograph and her agreement to participate in the Invisible Ones photo project. She readily agreed to that arrangement.
Anne was previously homeless in Maryland for a number of years before making her way to DC. She is not very forthcoming with information about her personal history or the reasons for her homelessness. She sleeps outdoors because she fears staying in any of the shelters. Many homeless women and men living on the streets tell me the same thing.
If you know or see someone like Anne, stop for a moment and have a conversation. Ask if you can help out in someway. I guarantee that you’ll both feel better having had that experience.