Mark Hayward's City Matters: Street life: Stressful, but 'as free as it gets'
Sears is one of hundreds of Manchester youth — advocates define them as anyone under 23 years of age — who are deemed homeless.
But he added that when he doesn't know where he will sleep, his day is incredibly stressful.
Of the four, two were couch-surfing, or staying at the homes of friends. One was 7-1/2 months pregnant and living with her boyfriend, but unsure how long that would last.
Only one, Andrew Burgin, a 22-year-old who grew up in Manchester, is sleeping outside tonight. His sleeping bag always get stolen, so Burgin curls up with a blanket beneath the Queen City bridge. The area smells of human feces, and the bridge can't keep him dry in a soaking rain, he said.
He ran away from an abusive home when he was 17. Although he hates it, Burgin makes money "spanging," or asking people for spare change. Alcohol, he said, keeps him homeless.
• None of the four holds a job: Burgin said he constantly loses his Social Security card; Boulay said McDonald's restaurants told him he is too strong willed; Sears is awaiting disability payments for a seizure disorder.
• And their bonds are as tight as any high-school peer group. The No. 1 rule of the street is to help out those who help you out, they said.
Boulay and his friends said they have seen children as young as 12 on the streets.So what to do about homeless youth? The Mayor's Youth Council came up with 10 recommendations, the most far reaching being a shelter for homeless youth. Technically, New Horizons shelter won't admit anyone under 18, but no one checks IDs there.
"I'm not going to sit and live in a shelter run by authority figures," Boulay said. "I'll live in a youth shelter run by people like me."
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Outrageous waste: You overpaid by how much? - 8
- City summer: Check out Manchester - 0
- Ignoring Lyme: What are state, towns doing? - 2
- Sentence fragment: Coco's cuckoo release - 2
- Ban fireworks? Get serious - 13
- Praising freedom: While curtailing it - 16
- Fergus Cullen: No politics buffer zone - some want issue unsettled - 7
- The perfect winner: Mrs. Craig gives when she receives - 0
- A sacred rite denied: Partial justice in Marriott murder - 0
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Portland takes first of two from NH Fisher Cats Saturday - 0
- Readers' Choice winners say public vote is meaningful - 0
- Amherst mini-golf course is readers' top choice - 0
- Twins Smoke Shop focuses on good cigars, happy clients - 0
- 'Backstage' NASCAR passes are fans' delight in Loudon - 0
- Motorcyclist killed, passenger injured when hit by car in Manchester accident - 0
- Bicyclist injured when hit by car in Hudson - 0
- Police hope for driving dream, but prepared for driving nightmare in Loudon - 0
- Police investigate serious accident in Manchester - 0
New Hampshire events starting on July 13
Bikers say under-30 generation isn't interested, and can't afford many of the top motorcycles
With the NASCAR fans, Jr.'s The Man
VA woes across the country led NH to reforms
Alewives and leeches; fireworks in the rain