Posts in Youth
Campground Halloween

About 40 children live at the temporary campground for homeless families and individuals set up in the far east corner of a parking lot for city vehicles. With the security of safe place to call home, that doesn't have to be packed up every day and moved, kids are afforded the luxury of actually celebrating some of the small moments of childhood; like dressing up for Halloween. A representative from the San Diego City Attorney's office arrived to deliver costumes just in time for the children to celebrate a Halloween carnival organized by the Alpha Project, the campground supervising agency. Alpha also supplies three meals a day for those in the campground and gives the children rides to and from school each day.

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Families, YouthPeggy Peattie
Sam

Sam, 23, dodged her mother's mental health episodes till she was finally tossed out of her Oceanside home at age 16. On the streets, other young people were jealous of her fortitude, staying away from drugs, refusing to sell her body for favors like a place to stay or getting high. So they beat her up and overdosed her. She ended up in the hospital, dying three times. When she went to retrieve her belongings upon release from medical care, she was arrested and jailed for having drugs in her system. She moved in with a boyfriend who soon started beating her and threatened their baby. He was arrested and she found help with a street mom who encouraged her to go live with her father, which she did. There she "got her shit together", got a job, then moved into her own apartment. Now Sam has a husband in the Marines, her own income from a good waitressing job, and is moving away from San Diego to live with her in-laws while her husband is deployed. "Life couldn't be no more better," she said.

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Women, YouthPeggy Peattie
Brittany and Joey

At the point most people would call rock bottom, these two met. And through an act of compassion they became an unlikely but complimentary couple, married nearly four years now. Both were abused as children, were in and out of CPS, CYA, and had seriously combative home lives growing up.  After his mother committed suicide, he suppressed his emotions and lashed out at everyone, including prison guards. She went through the foster care system and escaped being sex trafficked to fend for herself. Despite physical ailments and no reason whatsoever to trust anyone ever again, they found a quiet storm in supporting each other against the world. They would really like to find a normal living situation and even menial labor so they could start life afresh together.

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Nomad

Nomad, 23, grew up between Kentucky and California, from abusive parents to grandparents, back to parents then a group home where his finished high school. After witnessing someone fatally caught in a woodchipper as a child, he developed paranoid schizophrenia and still suffers from it. He and his infant son weer kicked out of his father's home, then his mother took custody of the boy. Nomad doesn't trust anyone. Street people call him the philosopher because he writes poetry and tries to empathize with everyone.

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Men, YouthPeggy Peattie
Steven

Steven, 24, grew up in Fallbrook, never quite got along with a mother addicted to methadone, so he moved to Memphis to be near his father and work in construction. After his wife cheated on him, he left that world to return to San Diego, where he lasted just four days at his mother's place, and can't find a job. He and his girlfriend share a tent downtown and aren't sure what to do, now that she is pregnant.

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Men, YouthPeggy Peattie
Derek

Derek Kleeman, 21, left the bickering of a home life to fend for himself on the streets. He hates violence and quotes Bible verses about humility. He keeps a lizard in his tent for company.

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Youth, MenPeggy Peattie