I was born and raised in San Francisco. My mom, she was a heroin addict in the Tenderloin. My dad was a well-known pimp. When I was born my mom did go into one of those programs for single mothers, but she couldn’t stop her addiction. So we ended up being homeless. 

We would just go wherever we could. The 1-day shelters, the weekend shelters. But there are rules you have to follow. And my mom, she just couldn’t. When I was in second grade we moved to public housing in Potrero Hill. I hated school. When I told my mom, she stopped making me go. We ended up back on the streets. I would get toys from McDonald’s happy meals and hang out with the other drug addicts in Boeddeker Park.

I had an older sister who had a baby at 16. So we went back to Potrero to help and live with her.  At the same time, Molly Wood had started KIPP Bayview Academy. She was going through the projects looking for students. She knocked on the door and said, “Hey do you have anybody going into the 5th grade?”  

KIPP started keeping me at school until late at night to catch me up. My mom used to read Dr. Seuss to me. So I just assumed that when you write, it was supposed to rhyme. By 7th grade – everyone knew me as a poet and that built my self-esteem.

Even when my mom was diagnosed with cancer and started hospice, I would visit her and then go straight to class. Eventually I started staying with members of my church. As my mom got worse, the Youth Pastor and his wife asked for her permission to take care of me. I knew that if I weren’t taken in, I would just continue that cycle of poverty. I really do believe that, from the bottom of my heart.

I was 14 when my mom died, I moved to Alameda with the Youth Pastor and his wife. I graduated high school and became the first person in my family to graduate from college. Today, I am a financial advisor for University Now –- our mission is to help students graduate without debt. I do whatever I can to help students pay their tuition on time, without taking on loans. I love my job.

When I was homeless, I felt invisible. I felt like people didn’t see me, like we were outcasts. At the same time, you see someone on the street, and you feel helpless so you might just walk by. I’ve done it too. But, if you can just treat homeless people like they’re people, like they matter. If you can feel hopeful like they have a future ahead of them, they just might.

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I was born and raised in San Francisco. My mom, she was a heroin addict in the Tenderloin. My dad was a well-known pimp. When I was born my mom did go into one of those programs for single mothers, but she couldn’t stop her addiction. So we ended up being homeless. 

We would just go wherever we could. The 1-day shelters, the weekend shelters. But there are rules you have to follow. And my mom, she just couldn’t. When I was in second grade we moved to public housing in Potrero Hill. I hated school. When I told my mom, she stopped making me go. We ended up back on the streets. I would get toys from McDonald’s happy meals and hang out with the other drug addicts in Boeddeker Park.

I had an older sister who had a baby at 16. So we went back to Potrero to help and live with her.  At the same time, Molly Wood had started KIPP Bayview Academy. She was going through the projects looking for students. She knocked on the door and said, “Hey do you have anybody going into the 5th grade?”  

KIPP started keeping me at school until late at night to catch me up. My mom used to read Dr. Seuss to me. So I just assumed that when you write, it was supposed to rhyme. By 7th grade – everyone knew me as a poet and that built my self-esteem.

Even when my mom was diagnosed with cancer and started hospice, I would visit her and then go straight to class. Eventually I started staying with members of my church. As my mom got worse, the Youth Pastor and his wife asked for her permission to take care of me. I knew that if I weren’t taken in, I would just continue that cycle of poverty. I really do believe that, from the bottom of my heart.

I was 14 when my mom died, I moved to Alameda with the Youth Pastor and his wife. I graduated high school and became the first person in my family to graduate from college. Today, I am a financial advisor for University Now –- our mission is to help students graduate without debt. I do whatever I can to help students pay their tuition on time, without taking on loans. I love my job.

When I was homeless, I felt invisible. I felt like people didn’t see me, like we were outcasts. At the same time, you see someone on the street, and you feel helpless so you might just walk by. I’ve done it too. But, if you can just treat homeless people like they’re people, like they matter. If you can feel hopeful like they have a future ahead of them, they just might.

glenda01.jpg
glenda02.jpg
glenda03.jpg
glenda04.jpg
glenda05.jpg
glenda06.jpg
glenda07.jpg
glenda08.jpg
glenda09.jpg
glenda10.jpg
glenda11.jpg
glenda12.jpg
glenda13.jpg
glenda14.jpg
glenda15.jpg

I was born and raised in San Francisco. My mom, she was a heroin addict in the Tenderloin. My dad was a well-known pimp. When I was born my mom did go into one of those programs for single mothers, but she couldn’t stop her addiction. So we ended up being homeless. 

We would just go wherever we could. The 1-day shelters, the weekend shelters. But there are rules you have to follow. And my mom, she just couldn’t. When I was in second grade we moved to public housing in Potrero Hill. I hated school. When I told my mom, she stopped making me go. We ended up back on the streets. I would get toys from McDonald’s happy meals and hang out with the other drug addicts in Boeddeker Park.

I had an older sister who had a baby at 16. So we went back to Potrero to help and live with her.  At the same time, Molly Wood had started KIPP Bayview Academy. She was going through the projects looking for students. She knocked on the door and said, “Hey do you have anybody going into the 5th grade?”  

KIPP started keeping me at school until late at night to catch me up. My mom used to read Dr. Seuss to me. So I just assumed that when you write, it was supposed to rhyme. By 7th grade – everyone knew me as a poet and that built my self-esteem.

Even when my mom was diagnosed with cancer and started hospice, I would visit her and then go straight to class. Eventually I started staying with members of my church. As my mom got worse, the Youth Pastor and his wife asked for her permission to take care of me. I knew that if I weren’t taken in, I would just continue that cycle of poverty. I really do believe that, from the bottom of my heart.

I was 14 when my mom died, I moved to Alameda with the Youth Pastor and his wife. I graduated high school and became the first person in my family to graduate from college. Today, I am a financial advisor for University Now –- our mission is to help students graduate without debt. I do whatever I can to help students pay their tuition on time, without taking on loans. I love my job.

When I was homeless, I felt invisible. I felt like people didn’t see me, like we were outcasts. At the same time, you see someone on the street, and you feel helpless so you might just walk by. I’ve done it too. But, if you can just treat homeless people like they’re people, like they matter. If you can feel hopeful like they have a future ahead of them, they just might.

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