Stories From The Frontline: South Bay

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Last month, hundreds of South Bay residents gathered in Torrance for our latest Stories From The Frontline event.

This edition of Stories From The Frontline felt special—not only because it was our eighth gathering (which is in itself, incredible), but because each speaker shared a different reality of our homelessness and housing crisis in 2019.

Throughout the course of the evening, we heard from our neighbors who had been evicted, who had suffered from domestic violence, who had experienced addiction and trauma, and who never could have imagined that they would be sleeping on the streets.

We also heard from neighbors who have dedicated their lives to the solutions to homelessness—specifically, working to create as much supportive and affordable housing as we can throughout Los Angeles.

All of the speakers spoke to a single, universal truth about this crisis, particularly in Los Angeles. That truth? That all of us could be one paycheck, one medical emergency, one tragedy away from potentially becoming homelessness.

[See the recap video below]

It’s this reality that binds us together in the fight for holistic solutions.

Yes, we need more supportive and affordable housing—but we also need an increase in trauma-informed care in street outreach.

Yes, we need more shelters and mental health services, but we also need a greater commitment to fund programs that help vulnerable youth and at-risk seniors before they end up on the streets.

Amber, our emcee, put this sentiment poignantly: “These events are special because people need to hear these stories…These stories are how we change the mindset about homelessness in our communities and beyond.”

One of our storytellers, Andrew, is a veteran who struggled with homelessness for years until supportive housing and services helped him get back on his feet.

Andrew spoke at Stories From The Frontline because he wanted his experience to help educate the public on the struggles that many housing-insecure veterans (over 3,000 as of the last Homeless Count data) face in Los Angeles.

Andrew wants to help lead our fight for solutions, to be an example of why supportive housing is more than 90% effective at ending homelessness.

His story is proof that supportive housing works.

Andrew was just one of many speakers who left an indelible impact on us and the community residents that showed up to hear from their neighbors.

Our South Bay edition of Stories From The Frontline was moving, inspiring, and unforgettable.

We hope to see you at our next event in 2020.