The Care for the Homeless Speakers’ Bureau presented its first public program to an audience of 20 on Tuesday, October 28th. Fittingly, the topic was health care issues for homeless people in New York City. A number of clients told their stories of living without a home and trying to access health care.
One client leader, Gayle Dorsky, talked about living on the streets and squatting. “I was lucky,” she said, “I found Care for the Homeless.” She spoke about friends who weren’t so lucky.
“I watched their health decline. Some developed chronic diseases. Some died,” she said.
In addition to several client speakers, the program featured Care for the Homeless Assistant Executive Director Debbian Fletcher-Blake who spoke about health care issues specific to people experiencing homeless in New York City. “A lot remains to be done," she said. Fletcher-Blake said the age adjusted life expectancy for chronically homeless people in New York City is about 50 years.
“We’re homeless, but we’re not hopeless,” one client said. “We’re trying to turn our lives around, and proper health care is essential. I’m proud of my involvement with Care for the Homeless, where I believe we’re in the second-chance business.”
Looking for a Speaker for your next event?
Contact the Care for the Homeless Speakers' Bureau.
Organizations, groups, classes or schools interested in having a presentation by the Care for the Homeless Speakers’ Bureau should contact Policy Director Jeff Foreman at (212) 366-4459 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The programs on a variety of issues include presentations by several Care for the Homeless client advocates who talk about their personal stories and connect them to policy issues, along with a Care for the Homeless staff person or Board member.