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Published on Dec 11, 2012
Imants is originally from Latvia, a country in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. But the night before we met, Imants sleept outside in a park near Central London.
Imants is in a way lucky. He has a job working construction and comes to the park to sleep at night. He has been saving money and hopes to have his own flat soon.
This time Imants has been sleeping rough for 6 months, but this is not his first time homeless in the United Kingdom. In the 4 years that he has lived in London almost half of them have been on the street. He says at one point he lost so much weight he looked like a skeleton.
I hope that by now Imants has raised the money he needed to get off the streets and that this will be his last time sleeping rough.
Since its launch in November 2008, Invisible People has leveraged the power of video and the massive reach of social media to share the compelling, gritty, and unfiltered stories of homeless people from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. The vlog (video blog) gets up close and personal with veterans, mothers, children, layoff victims and others who have been forced onto the streets by a variety of circumstances. Each week, they’re on InvisiblePeople.tv, and high traffic sites such as YouTube, Twitter and Facebook, proving to a global audience that while they may often be ignored, they are far from invisible.
Invisible People goes beyond the rhetoric, statistics, political debates, and limitations of social services to examine poverty in America via a medium that audiences of all ages can understand, and can’t ignore. The vlog puts into context one of our nation’s most troubling and prevalent issues through personal stories captured by the lens of Mark Horvath – its founder – and brings into focus the pain, hardship and hopelessness that millions face each day. One story at a time, videos posted on InvisiblePeople.tv shatter the stereotypes of America’s homeless, force shifts in perception and deliver a call to action that is being answered by national brands, nonprofit organizations and everyday citizens now committed to opening their eyes and their hearts to those too often forgotten.
Invisible People is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to changing the way we think about people experiencing homelessness.