Homeless Youth Project film – Tucson (from youtube.com)
About 70 people attended the premiere film screening today at Armory Park Center, 220 S. 5th Avenue of the new Homeless Youth Project film produced by Pan Left Productions and the Carlos G. Figueroa Foundation. I’ve posted above the URL link to this 30 minute film for viewers to see and share with others. M/C Brian Flagg of Casa Maria Kitchen encouraged everyone present to continue to support the good work done by several agencies in town:
Our Family, Youth on Their Own (YOTO), Tucson Youth Development, Wingspan, Primavera, many of which had tables at this event. There was also a table with B/W photos entitled “The Forgotten Ones” of homeless individuals/camps taken by Master Photographer Anselmo Rascon, who was present.
Ward 3 Councilmember Karin Uhlich welcomed everyone and said that more needs to be done in helping the poor and homeless in Tucson, that we need to “listen to the poor, homeless” because we are “not doing enough”.
Doug Davis of Indic Soul then sang “Another Day of Living”, a powerful song about homelessness, struggle, and existence. He said he had been homeless 2 or 3 times.
The Ron Austin, producer/director of the film, being once homeless himself, said that the homeless need somewhere to sleep and be safe, need stability and keeping their personal possessions guarded, and that support for agencies that help homeless youth is needed.
Ron also announced that a free Wellness Clinic (Healer: Heal Thyself) was ongoing at Armory Park Center that day as well.
The powerful film was then shown, interviewing several young men/women about how they became homeless, how did they get necessities, how were they treated by the police & the public, and their hopes for the future. Particularly poignant were their own voices about losing their jobs, fighting with parents, being in CPS or foster care system, drug use, pregnancies, what it was like to live outdoors in tunnels, under bridges, in the parks, staying with friends, getting food. Watch the Youtube video above for much more of their thoughts/feelings/dreams.
Then Diana Figueroa, daughter of homeless Carlos G. Figueroa related her father’s story of being robbed of his bike & back pack, assaulted so badly he ended up in a coma at UMC, then died a day later on March 4, 2003. This horrible incident propelled Diana to create this foundation upon her promise to her Dad to help raise awareness about homelessness, the less fortunate & the poor in Tucson. She is now on the National Coalition for the Homeless and continues this fight to help the homeless. Her father’s murder at age 52 years old has not been solved to this day.
Lastly Tina Huerta previewed a trailer of a documentary film she is making about interviewing people about their perceptions on homelessness, with interviews of advocates in the field, such as Ron Austin (co-founder of the Carlos G. Figueroa Foundation), Jon McLane (founder of Safe Park, present today), Janet Lynn Henderson of Los Angeles, and Bobby Burns, author of a book called “Shelter”, when he was homeless.
More about the Carlos G. Figueroa Foundation (and videos), click here.