There are no shelters in Raleigh for families or couples. What researchers are discovering is what people experiencing homelessness have long known from heartbreaking experience. In the series of losses that make up the experience of homelessness, perhaps none is more catastrophic than losing your family, your partner, your children.
This is a primary reason some people make the brave choice to sleep outside – so they can keep their family intact. If you were 50 years old and 3 months pregnant, would you sleep in a tent on an 18º night in order to keep your family together? We know some who have.
We would love to see new shelters emerge in Raleigh to fill this gap. Until then, we do all we can to help families that fight to stay together and restore the losses of homelessness.
Among the far-reaching undesirable consequences of homelessness is the negative impact that it has on family structure. Homelessness, without intervention, often breaks up families. It is not unusual for homeless families to be broken up forcibly so that they can enter emergency shelters. Shelter policies often make it impossible for families to stay together, especially when older boys or fathers are involved.