St. Louis leaders find out first-hand about life on the streets

November 26, 2012 by  

On November 15, 2012, over 30 St. Louis, Missouri, leaders found out just what it’s like to live on the streets. They slept on a concrete parking lot in north St. Louis to experience homelessness first hand.

The evening was the brainchild of Covenant House, a non-profit organization helping homeless young people. It wanted to help community leaders understand what young people are going through when they are on the streets. It also want to dispel stereotypes and misconceptions.

Among those who decided to accept Covenant House’s invitation was Jennifer Joyce, who is the St. Louis Circuit Attorney, and said she went because:

“…we have no inkling of what it’s really like for these kids out on the street.”

She adds she sees too many kids who become victims themselves, or who are drawn into crime, when they are on their own.

The leaders who attended the event toured Covenant House and then met some of the agency’s prior clients. Among these was Mikelle Collins, who expressed that he was pleasantly surprised that so many people were willing to spend a night freezing outside, all to gain an understanding of the plight of the homeless.

The executive director of Covenant House, Sue Wagener, said she hoped the event would help St. Louis’s leaders learn how to help the homeless kids, who often have not had the benefit of parental guidance and support.

Covenant House could publish brochures that explain its mission to the community. It might also consider flyer printing to raise funds, particularly around the holidays.