How our homeless friend Alexis got off the street and into a mobile home…
When we first met Alexis in the fall of 2014, she and her two dogs lived in a tent on a grassy hill off the 101 freeway. We quickly became friends; it was amazing to see how, in spite of her own desperate situation, she would still help others, always willing to share what little she had.
Alexis took great pride in cleaning up, not just her campground, but also the surrounding area, and at some point Alexis even started growing tomato and other edible plants, and all the neighbors loved and supported her.
This all came to an abrupt end during a raid by the sheriff’s department when deputies destroyed and trashed most of her belongings. Alexis was left with nothing. Not knowing where to go, and too ashamed to ask for help, she ended up on a side walk in East Hollywood, surrounded by drug dealers and violence.
How Alexis was able to keep going is a mystery to me. I would have given up long ago. But somehow, Alexis made her way into Hollywood, where she found a street that felt it little safer than her prior location, and she started doing what comes naturally to her: she cleaned up.
She picked up trash and she made sure drug dealers knew they weren’t welcomed on the block. Seeing the difference, neighbors took notice, telling her how much they appreciate her work and eventually, a kind and generous property owner allowed Alexis to set up a small shed at the far end of a parking lot and live in it. She made it her home with a bed, a small desk, a shelf and a chair. Again, she started growing fruit and vegetables, she even built a fountain, and continued to make sure that the street was clean and safe.
Until someone reported her to the city. An inspector came out on 04/04 and ordered Alexis to vacate the premises. Desperate and at the end of her rope, Alexis reached out to us. We drove over there quickly, spoke to some of the neighbors as well as to LAPD Senior Lead Officer Paul Jordan, who has been very supportive of Alexis since she moved into his district, and together, we decided that we need to get organized and help.
Of course it would be best if Alexis could move into an apartment, but time was of essence, and there are so many homeless and just very few housing options in L.A., and so we decided the most simple and immediate solution would be to buy her a used RV until we can find a more permanent solution.
Reaching out on GoFundMe, we asked for support, and many people were willing to help. Within only ten days, we raised over $2,000, and on 04/21 we bought an RV.
She moved in the same night, and her life has taken a 180 degree turn since then… She has been able to take showers in the privacy of her own home, has been able to cook and decorate and clean her clothes… and and and … all the things that we take for granted.
A couple of days ago, Alexis had her first job interviews at local restaurants, and we’re keeping our fingers crossed that she will get the job that will help her take the next steps.
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