This is a project to help you know the stories behind the faces of your local homeless.
I met Andre Jones when he asked me for help as I walked through Five Points, Atlanta. I told him I don’t give out money but I would buy him dinner if I could hear his story. Here is Andre’s story. Listen to the interview below.
He moved to Atlanta from Selma, Alabama nine years ago because he heard it was happening. When he got off the Greyhound he went to a strip club because this was the big city, but he tried something he says he never should have. He got hooked on cocaine.
Cocaine made him homeless. It makes him not want to keep a job when he gets one. He says he doesn’t sell his body or rob people. He says, “Sometimes I just wanna give up, but sometimes I’m like ‘God, you gotta help me.’ But I know how to be content in any situation.”
He walks around with a rock and a lighter in his hand tapping beats and rapping. Here is a rap he rapped on the spot for me.
Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
I wrote this poem just for you.
Crack cocaine, it will
Crack cocaine- the life is for real.
Most people do drugs.
I do drugs.
I just pray to God He’ll help me off of these drugs.
Hanging out on the corner with thugs.
People looking like okay here he go,
When I come they already know
I beg for change and ask for food.
In the way of my heart
That’s really not cool.
Most people don’t understand my pain;
I hate that I ever started messing with cocaine
“My name is Andre. I’m homeless. And if you wanna help me you can find me at Five Points. If I had a place to stay, and you got my back, I’d feel like somebody loves me.”
If you see Andre walking through Five Points with his rock and lighter, stop and say hi, let him rap for you, and maybe buy him a meal.
Raw Spoon, 8-25-15
Also, stay tuned for more stories from your local homeless friends. Hannah from #HappyStrangers at happystrangers.co and I interviewed Net, and James in little five points on Saturday. Hannah has already started posting what makes them happy. Nice Job Hannah!