Tuesday, March 13, 2012
An American homeless family (30 Pics)
Photographer Lucy Nicholson documented the plight of Benita Guzman, 40, and her niece Angelica Cervantes, 36, who are homeless with eleven children between them. They stick together in an effort to keep their children together as a family, and not taken away and separated in foster homes. Nicholson found the family after they had been staying on a campsite for three weeks. The family could no longer afford a rental van to ferry the kids to school so had to leave the camp find a cheap motel room for the night, so the children could walk to school. The family is part of a disturbing trend. One in 45 children, totalling 1.6 million, is homeless, the highest number in United States history, according to a 2011 study by the National Center on Family Homelessness. Children who are homeless are more likely to suffer from acute and chronic medical illnesses, finds the study. They go hungry at twice the rate of other children. They have three times the rate of emotional and behavioral problems, such as anxiety, depression, sleep problems, withdrawal, and aggression. California is ranked the fifth highest state in the nation for its percentage of homeless children.