FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS!
While we’d love to answer every single email we’ve received, it’s proving to be far too time-consuming and counter-productive. As many of the questions are the same, we’ve decided to do a quick FAQ.
Q: Can I come with you to help out?
A: The most frequently asked question asked! We’re good for now, thanks! If that changes, we’ll put out a call on the interwebz or email the many lovely people who've offered to help. A neighborhood group is forming and we’d love for you to get involved: https://www.facebook.com/groups/SanFranciscoShares/
Q: When are you distributing tents next?
A: We don’t want to publish the dates and times we’re doing this. We’ve encountered a great deal of hostility from people, and we’d rather not find out if their violence transfers over from online to real-time.
Q: Why aren’t you taking more pictures of the tent distribution?
A: Not everyone likes having their picture taken so we won’t be doing this out of respect for individuals' privacy. Some folks we encounter might be fleeing abusive relationships or have mental health issues that could be triggered by cameras. Additionally, taking photos of people we are just meeting feels like objectification and we’d rather not do it.
Q: What about socks / toiletries / food / clothes / porta-potties / hand washing stations / etc.?
A: Those are all great ideas and should be done. If you are thinking about doing it, then you should probably do it. As for us, we have been tasked with tents so we will stick to tents. If you’re interested in volunteering to do service work with homeless or otherwise marginalized people, please visit: http://www.sfheart.com/volunteer.html
Q: Do you think this is a solution? My solution would be [insert whatever here]
A: The only solution we are offering is the ability to stay dry during a storm. Until better options materialize, we will continue to distribute tents.
We’ve heard a lot of rather angry opinions from very angry people on how they would solve homelessness. For the most part, we’re glad that they aren’t nearly as ambitious as we are because those plans sound terrible. So, ya' know, keep typing in all caps, homeless haters.
Q: I am a reporter. Can I interview you?
A: As long as you are not C.W. Nevius or Fox News (same thing, really), then yes.
In preparation for the fancy Super Bowl Party City Hall has promised to their corporate sponsors, a large push by Interim Mayor Ed Lee and Supervisor Scott Wiener has been made to cleanse city streets of any and all signs of wealth inequality here in San Francisco. Poor people make for such terrible B-Roll, you know.
Under the marching orders of City Hall, the San Francisco Department of Public Works has begun confiscating the tents of homeless residents right before El Nino hits with another series of storms, leaving our vulnerable neighbors exposed to the elements.
* It is our hope to crowd fund replacement tents for the individuals who have lost their homes due to the heartless actions of local government. With some 2-4 person tents costing anywhere from $30-$40, it is our hope that we can replace 100 of these confiscated tents before the worst of the storms hit.
* Please note that the numbers in this paragraph were from our initial campaign launched in late January. Since then, we have surpassed the original goal of $2000 and have continued to purchase tents with those funds. Neither Tara nor I have received any monetary compensation for this effort.
GoFundMe has asked to write a little bit about myself to ensure my authenticity. So, here goes: I am a fourth generation Bay Area resident currently living in the Mission Dolores neighborhood of San Francisco. Previously homeless myself, I have been a strong advocate for poor and marginally housed individuals since my mid-20s. Having previously worked in social services and still having strong ties with the communities with which they serve, I will be distributing these tents directly to folks in need with the assistance of friends.