Homeless Kids | Washington | Huffington Post
Maggie Warner is eight years old and lives in a mini van parked on the street in Washington state with her mom and 17-year-old sister. She is homeless and has been since she was 22 months old.
I met Maggie because of a community service program I’m working on for school. My assignment was to find someone who has a hardship, interview them and try to advocate for them to improve things. My mom is a Huffington Post writer who just did a story about the recession and how people have been forced to live in their cars – and that’s how I came to “meet” Maggie.
Maggie and I spoke on the phone a few days ago and a lot of what she said was really disturbing – especially coming from an 8-year-old. I hope her comments disturb you too so that together we can help Maggie and other kids like her. Maggie and her mother gave me permission to tell her story here.
Maggie and her family used to live in an apartment, but they lost that when her mom lost her job. They moved from the apartment to an RV and then when the gas and upkeep on the RV got too expensive, they moved to the mini van. They park in a different spot every night so that the police won’t arrest them.
“I feel like my life keeps getting smaller and smaller,” Maggie told me, “and then one day I’m afraid we won’t have anything and we’ll be living in the street.” Maggie says she has nightmares about that happening. I wanted to promise her that I would never let that happen to her, but realized that that would be a promise I might not be able to keep.
Maggie goes to school every day. Her teacher lets her brush her teeth in the classroom. She takes showers at friends’ homes and some times, she just takes a sponge bath – washing off in the car. During the summer, she and her family stay near a campground and use those showers.
Maggie does her homework in the car, at school or in the library. The library has been great for Maggie and her family because there are lots of free programs there. I hope they never close that library because of budget cuts.
via Huffington Post