“I see myself being on the streets till I die”
This is the sentence I always remember Glenn saying to me. It was one of the last before I turned my equipment off.
My interview with Glenn was probably the longest interview I’ve ever completed. Even when I put the camera away we kept talking for another half an hour. He seemed grateful to have somebody to talk to.
Glenn has made himself a home in little gap down an alleyway in between Fitzroy and Carlton stating he would rather sleep on the streets than in a boarding house due to his experiences in them and unpleasant living conditions they’ve past provided.
He claims he knows the residents in the area and is grateful for how often they bring him down meals at dinner time.
After successfully completing his HSC in New South Wales, Glenn started attending University of Sydney undertaking a Bachelors Degree in Business and Accounting. He delved into the uni drug/party scene which led to an addiction and abuse problem, propelling him to drop out of his degree.
He now doesn’t take any illicit drugs but does still smoke tobacco and drink alcohol like many other Australians.
His father has passed away and he doesn’t feel comfortable or want to burden his mother with his struggles.
“I like that charity on Hosier Lane called The Living Room”
(The Living Room, is personally one of my favourite charities too, but this isn’t about me so I’ll shut up now)
Glenn says his mostly given up on showering on a regular basis but when he does he goes to The Living Room to use their services. The Living Room provide so many great services I don’t have the space to discuss them all in this post.
Sacred Heart Mission, located in St. Kilda, is another charity that has helped Glenn in a big way. Though struggling to pay for a myki to get out to St. Kilda on a regular basis means he doesn’t get to use their services as much as he would like to. When there’s no rain he’ll undergo the hour long walk down to the beach to enjoy a meal and take in the scenery.
Like Susan, Glenn isn’t a fan of the Salvos on Bourke St due to too many ‘druggies’ being around when trying to access a meal.
Whilst the first sentence of this post may come across as if Glenn has lost all hope of building to a better life, when he started telling me about his favourite films, I could sense passion in his voice and I’m glad he still holds love for something in life.
Free wifi in the CBD and access to computers in local libraries has granted Glenn, and I’m sure many others, the ability to find information on where to go for help and services that’s accessible to them.
I think meeting Glenn highlighted to me the importance of donations such as baby wipes, toothpaste, tooth brushes, tissues, a myki card and hand sanitiser are. Simple, everyday items many of us take for granted because we’re so used to constantly having them at hand. So, while I am usually someone who always encourages donating money over goods, handing out everyday times like these are a good way to start helping those in need.
Click here to find out more about the services the Living Room provides to those who are disadvantaged.
Click here to find out more about the services Sacred Heart Mission provide.