A portrait of a homeless woman in Regina, Saskatchewan
Me: What’s your name?
 
Rhonda: Wait, I got cancer pain
 
M: Where’s your cancer?
 
R:: Doctors can’t do nothing about it. It was in remission, now it’s back. They can’t do nothing about it. They just do the best they can. I used to be chunkier than this, now I’m just skin and bones.
 
M: When did you find out?
 
R: I knew I had cancer, but the doctors didn’t know, until the doctor at the general Hospital came up to me and said “Why didn’t you tell us you had cancer?” Well for crying out loud you didn’t ask. Okay, it’s gone.
 
M: Are you from here?
 
R: Weyburn, brought up on White Bear reserve Carlyle
 
M: What brought you here?
 
R: I had been to boarding schools, foster homes, group homes, when I was at one foster home I was with my sister and brother in law, they raised me, they are my mom and dad now. I never knew my mom and never knew my dad until later on. They finally got me back at the age of nine and I didn’t want to go
 
M: How long have you been at Carmichael?
 
R: Dang, that’s what I’m trying to figure out. Maybe.. uh.. around 2000, yeah the 2000, maybe 1999. Roughly around there.
 
M: Have you been on the street during that time?
 
R: I’ve been homeless about a year and a half
 
M: What caused that?
 
R: I was living in Mclean with my cousin and then she moved in with her boyfriend, and I didn’t have no place to go.
 
M: Where did you stay when you were on the streets?
 
R: I have a home now. But when I was homeless I slept anywhere. With my foster brother, I stuck close to my foster brother to make sure nobody bothered him. And I taught him how to fight. Yeah, we panhandled.
 
M: What do those words on your sign mean to you?
 
R: Happy that I’m, I have a home. That I’m free from poverty. And when I was out there I was lonely. Except I had my little brother. We were always lonely so we stuck by eachother.
 

To help people like this please visit www.carmichaeloutreach.ca or www.maybelldevelopments.com and consider donating or volunteering today.

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