Josh and Brooke say they grew up with abuse in the home and are making a new life together with their infant son.

After being kicked out of his mom’s house, Josh and Brooke are homeless. The couple lived in their car for a short time and stayed with Brooke’s sister for a time.  Josh receives $735 a month through SSI, and $188 a month on his SNAP card for food.

February 2017:  Josh and his girlfriend, Brooke, are looking for a place to live. While at a doctor’s office to update their infant son’s immunizations, Josh gets a text from a real estate agent. The two are living with Brooke’s mother but want to find their own place. “Starting at 7 years old, I grew up in foster care. I was in 30-something foster homes. Nobody wanted me. When I was 18, I committed a felony. I robbed a laundromat to survive because I didn’t have food, nothing. And I went to prison until I was 20. Got out. I lived in Chicago for a couple of years, then moved back here.”

February 2017: Josh and his girlfriend, Brooke, are looking for a place to live. While at a doctor’s office to update their infant son’s immunizations, Josh gets a text from a real estate agent. The two are living with Brooke’s mother but want to find their own place. “Starting at 7 years old, I grew up in foster care. I was in 30-something foster homes. Nobody wanted me. When I was 18, I committed a felony. I robbed a laundromat to survive because I didn’t have food, nothing. And I went to prison until I was 20. Got out. I lived in Chicago for a couple of years, then moved back here.”

February 2017:  Josh and Brooke make their way across town. They are planning to get married in the coming months. Meanwhile, staying with family, they are searching for an apartment of their own.

February 2017: Josh and Brooke make their way across town. They are planning to get married in the coming months. Meanwhile, staying with family, they are searching for an apartment of their own.

February 2017:  Josh and Brooke regularly eat weekday meals with their son at the Horizons Soup Kitchen and Food Pantry.  Months later, they say they are trying to regain custody of their son after a relative said Brooke bit him on his arm. “I don’ believe she did it. What happened was Brooke was playing with him and accidentally put a bruise on him by tickling his arm with her mouth.” Josh says he believes the complaint stemmed from the drama of one of their relatives who is controlling. 

February 2017: Josh and Brooke regularly eat weekday meals with their son at the Horizons Soup Kitchen and Food Pantry.  Months later, they say they are trying to regain custody of their son after a relative said Brooke bit him on his arm. “I don’ believe she did it. What happened was Brooke was playing with him and accidentally put a bruise on him by tickling his arm with her mouth.” Josh says he believes the complaint stemmed from the drama of one of their relatives who is controlling. 

May 2017:  “I try to do everything right by God because I was told that if I didn’t, I’d go to hell. And I’m not trying to go to hell. I’m trying to do what’s right. It’s a sin to not be married and to sleep with one another, and … It’s just, if you’re married, you know life could be a lot better than if you have to be single. It was really awesome. I thought it was the best thing in my life. The marriage, being married, it’s the best thing to experience, especially when I had no drama around me, nothing. It was just me, my wife, and the judge. It feels like I’m getting married in my second home. I’ve faced a lot of trouble here (in the courthouse) but I’m trying to change.”  Josh and Brooke don’t have the $10 needed for a copy of their marriage certificate.

May 2017: “I try to do everything right by God because I was told that if I didn’t, I’d go to hell. And I’m not trying to go to hell. I’m trying to do what’s right. It’s a sin to not be married and to sleep with one another, and … It’s just, if you’re married, you know life could be a lot better than if you have to be single. It was really awesome. I thought it was the best thing in my life. The marriage, being married, it’s the best thing to experience, especially when I had no drama around me, nothing. It was just me, my wife, and the judge. It feels like I’m getting married in my second home. I’ve faced a lot of trouble here (in the courthouse) but I’m trying to change.”

Josh and Brooke don’t have the $10 needed for a copy of their marriage certificate.

June 2017:  Homeless, Josh and Brooke are staying with Brooke’s sister and her baby in the Welcome Inn.  “Me and my wife was living with my mom, and she got upset over hot dogs.  She got mad because somebody ate all the hotdogs, and kicked us out.  So now we’re living on the street with my dog and I’m on disability SSI. And I don’t have nowhere else to go. My food stamp card’s $188 and my SSI is only $735, and that’s really not enough to live off of, with the rent and stuff around here. And some places don’t let you have your dog, and my dog’s been with me for four years.  He’s like my own son. He’s protected me. I saved him from abuse and neglect, just like I was when I was a child, being abused and neglected.”

June 2017: Homeless, Josh and Brooke are staying with Brooke’s sister and her baby in the Welcome Inn.

“Me and my wife was living with my mom, and she got upset over hot dogs.  She got mad because somebody ate all the hotdogs, and kicked us out.  So now we’re living on the street with my dog and I’m on disability SSI. And I don’t have nowhere else to go. My food stamp card’s $188 and my SSI is only $735, and that’s really not enough to live off of, with the rent and stuff around here. And some places don’t let you have your dog, and my dog’s been with me for four years.  He’s like my own son. He’s protected me. I saved him from abuse and neglect, just like I was when I was a child, being abused and neglected.”

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