Hi Everyone- My name is Gabriela Sevilla, I am a third year law student at Howard University School of Law from Newark,NJ - but I've lived in NE DC for the past 3 years. As an intern with Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless I was asked to be a legal observer at DC ordered encampment sweeps. It was there where I met Monica, Pete, and Sassy the dog who live in tent near Union Station. Monica has become a sister to me and since meeting them I continued to visit their tent and check in with food, socks, sweaters, and dog food.
Recently, their story was featured in the Washington Post. Now everyone could see what I see. They were no longer invisible.
They spiraled into homelessness after their building was condemned and could use your help with a deposit and a few months rent for a new apartment . This could happen to anyone. Many of us are one bad day or one missed paycheck away from homelessness.
In DC we have an affordable housing crisis, the average 1 bedroom apartment is $1,310 per month which is out of reach for Monica and Pete. They have been living outside for years and are doing the best they can to get back indoors, but it has been exhausting.
They are loving people despite how cruel the world has treated them and would appreciate your support! I am also helping them navigate the barriers they have to securing housing (No rental history, pay stubs) . If there are any small landlords in the DMV area willing to help this family please reach out.
Your donations so far have gone toward interview clothes, sneakers, food, basic living necessities, and a new cellphone and plan. The rest of the funds will go towards a security deposit, several months of rent, and utility bills. Monica was a front end supervisor at Price Rite in Maryland for 7 years - if you know of any similar job opportunities in DC please reach out.
I have been working with Monica to create a bank account, we are waiting for her debit card to come in the mail. The funds will be transferred to that account and I will be reimbursed for our shopping trips for basic life necessities we have done so far.
Find me on twitter @gabrielasevi for more updates and progress videos/pictures!
From the article:
Down she spiraled.
“I’m dying out here!” she said to no one. “I’m dying out here! Please, I need help!”
“Monica!” Pete finally shouted. “Calm your voice down!”
Now she was addressing the people on the streets.
“Acknowledge us!” she said. “We’re human beings! Please, just acknowledge us!”
(Monica and Me taking a selfie earlier this month) *Monica and Gabriela Sevilla (GoFundMe Organizer,Friend, and Homeless Rights Activist) @gabrielasevi on Twitter