Story of My Life

by Derrickson

My name is Derrickson and I have a long story to tell. But to cut it short, I will just say that my journey to the United States of America was the scariest moment of my life. I was 16 years old when I lost my dad. I lived with my friend’s parents for three years, along with my little sister who is 7 years of age. I had to drop out of school because of my money situation,


United Against Adversity: Bridging Immigrant Struggles and Homelessness

Woman sitting with caption in background: "Hello there. We're Still Here"

by Johanna Elattar

In the vast tapestry of American society, two critical issues intersect, shedding light on the complex challenges faced by immigrants who find themselves grappling with homelessness. The juxtaposition of these two societal concerns has prompted both concern and compassion as communities, advocates, and policymakers seek to address the unique struggles faced by these individuals and families. 

Many immigrants’ journey to the United States is fueled by hopes for a better life,


San Francisco Sells Out on Sanctuary

by Detroit Richards

San Francisco Supervisor Matt Dorsey represents District 6—an area that includes portions of the Civic Center neighborhood, which is home to so many unhoused individuals. Dorsey introduced legislation that would exclude undocumented immigrants who have been arrested for selling fentanyl from the city’s sanctuary city policy.

If his ordinance passes, any undocumented person convicted of fentanyl distribution within seven years of their previous conviction will be deported,


From Africa to San Francisco

A photo of the Ferry building, with the Bay Bridge and Treasure Island behind it.

by Novalie Young

San Francisco has a high number of Black immigrants. The community began with the workers and entrepreneurs of the California Gold Rush in the 19th century, and in the early-to-mid 20th century, it grew as more migrant workers were drawn to the city. Since then, the Black community living here has attracted masses of other immigrants from developing countries in search of greener pastures. 

The increased population of homeless people in the streets and shelters around the city includes some of these Black immigrants.


Camp City: Asylum Seekers and the Homelessness Crisis on NY Randall’s Island

by Johanna Elattar

The Randall’s Island “Humanitarian Emergency Response and Relief Center” opened on October 19, 2022, to house asylum seekers arriving in New York City. The New York Immigration Coalition quickly denounced poor conditions at the tent encampments on Randall’s Island, and the decision to house asylum seekers in them. Now, Mayor Eric Adams is facing demands to find alternative housing options to protect the new arrivals.  

The facility at Randall’s Island is approximately 84,400 square feet,


Undocumented, Homeless and Stranded in San Francisco

Young, energetic, and full of life, I only wanted what was best for my family and me. After completing high school back in my country of birth, I wanted to study abroad. I always dreamt of the U.S. In 2016, I started filling out my applications, and I was determined to achieve my dream. Luckily, I had all the support I needed, and after so many applications finally I got a response for a U.S.


The Pain of Immigration and Homelessness in San Francisco

The thought of it all was so amazing that it sent chills down my spine. America: land of plenty, a second chance, heaven on Earth. A place only seen on TV. Just the thought of visiting makes one do the unbelievable just to get there. Some use marvelous pictures of America as screensavers on their phones, and laptops, and as wallpaper and art  to decorate their homes. This makes most want to live in a fast-lane-life and fantasy world and try to do anything to get to America.


Seeking Greener Pastures, Only to Find Homelessness in the Bay Area

My name is Samel Leparan Ntiwuas. I live just down the street from the house where I grew up.

I grew up in Oakland and San Francisco. My folks succeeded in their own ways, at one point owning a home, which was once considered the very foundation of financial stability. Then, when life chose to give me a bitter test, I joined the surging number of unsheltered immigrant people who spill out around freeways,


Made Homeless by COVID-19

When the first case of COVID-19 was reported, no one knew how far it would spread or how dramatically it would impact our lives. No one knew the damage it would do to our health, our finances, our mental wellbeing. As I write this the impact of this pandemic has been felt across borders, affecting everyone regardless of age, sex, religion or even social status. What we used to see as a normal routine became a luxury as our movement was restricted by lockdowns and self-isolations.


Immigration and Homelessness

Only those affected by immigration and homelessness can understand what it is like. Seeking greener pastures in an attempt to survive has led to both positive and negative outcomes. Difficulties in life have led low-income African families to take more risks and seek greener pastures in an attempt to survive. My case was no different—times were too difficult to bear. I tried so many other things to make a living and support my mother, but economic challenges and high taxation rates made it impossible for me.