This is Miguel, He and his brother are homeless. This morning, I found them huddled together, asleep, trying to stay warm, outside a building across the street from us.

Their story is so heartbreaking. They immigrated from Guatemala five years ago, in hopes of being able to work and send money back to their mother, who’s raising three girls, alone, since their father was killed.

There is a silver lining, they say. They have each other. Though last week, Santos had gone to the hospital, and Miguel was so lost, not knowing how to contact him.

But, today was the first time I’d found them like this, without a place to find shelter and warmth. And, it really affected me.

I woke Jayson, who made them breakfast and hot cocoa. And, I put together backpacks for them, with food and necessities.

Two weeks ago, Santos and a bad infection on his nose, and sadly can’t afford to go to the doctor. So, Jayson went to the pharmacy and picked up hydrogen peroxide and over the counter ointments, and then sat with him and cleaned his face.

This morning, when Jayson saw Santos’s face was looking 50x better, he started to cry.

If you’re wondering why they aren’t in a shelter, part of it is that they always separate them, and try to bus them to far out places. They are all the family they have. And, I’m my book, that counts for a lot. But, pisses me off, that our system here in NYC feels justified to break up a family, and ship them somewhere, like pariahs or less than human.

They are truly two very sweet guys, who have fallen on tough times, and desperately in need of compassion.

They’re also two of the people living on the street who’s stories motivated us to start the Backpacks For The Street project.

Please join us in making a difference and effecting change.

For more info on how you can help, contact: info@backpacksforthestreet.org.

 

We can do better. We must.

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