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Voices from the Street: Anthony and Fahad

Two roommates on eating, getting to school and other challenges of the outdoor life. "When you're homeless, basically you got nothing. You're in a jail cell."


The wool jacket that kept Fahad Ali sort of warm while he was living on the Minnesota streets. Credit: Florangela Davila

Fahad Ali is 20. He’s from Minnesota by way of Somalia. Anthony Trumbull is 19.  He grew up in Federal Way and he's really into skateboarding. Fahad and Anthony are housemates in Seattle who have one big thing in common: They both know what it’s like to live on the street.

Crosscut has been writing about homeless youth as part of our Kids@Risk series. In “Voices From the Street”, we share conversations between homeless youth. Fahad became homeless in Minnesota after his mother died. Anthony wound up on the streets when his girlfriend kicked him out of the house. Their conversation was recorded at a transitional housing home in Seattle run by YouthCare. The roommates talk about how they survived on the streets, how it feels to be homeless and about the need for more resources geared to homeless kids. Anthony goes first, talking about trying to "eat healthy" when you're shopping with food stamps.

Fahad is finishing up his GED. He hopes to get to Alaska and one day open a restaurant and have a family. Anthony plans to finish college and go into the computer business.

This story was produced by Crosscut's Florangela Davila. Music ("Asa Nisi Masa") is by Johnny Ripper. The Crosscut series "Voices from the Street" can also be heard on KPLU-FM.

You can find more "Voices from the Street" conversations here. To follow all Crosscut's Kids@Risk coverage, go here.


Florangela Davila is Contributing Arts Editor at Crosscut. A freelance journalist, she is also a regular contributor to NPR-affiliate KPLU-FM. She's a former faculty member at the University of Washington and a former reporter at The Seattle Times. You can follow her arts-centric Twitter feed @florangela or email her at florangela.davila@crosscut.com.

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