BANGOR- Money….while some say it can’t buy happiness, it sure is necessary to survive.
Just ask those who have nothing but the clothes on their backs.
“I get my food from a dumpster. And I make like 5 dollars a day,” said Shane, who says he lives in Bangor with no home.
He spends his days outside the Bangor Mall, hoping that people driving by might be willing to spare a few dollars.
“You know, this is real. It’s real. It’s completely real. I’m crying, because it is real.”
Shane tells us he moved to Bangor from Camden, hoping to find better resources for people in his situation.
But so far, to no avail.
“I’ve been here for a year, and I’ve been living on the streets. I’ve been living in hallways. I’ve been living in laundry rooms. People’s floors and stuff,” says Shane.
The volume of traffic coming on and off of Stillwater Avenue each day makes for a good location for people like Shane to hold up a sign, trying to get enough dollars in their pockets to maybe just make it through a day, or even to try and achieve long term goals.
This is Tony….
“Not everybody out here is wanting to be out here.”
He has been homeless on and off for years.
“Some of us are trying to better ourselves.”
Tony is out of work on disability, but tells us that monthly check is not enough to sustain him.
On days when passerby’s are especially generous, he finds a cheap motel so he can sleep and shower.
But more often than not, he goes home to a tent in the woods.
“Sometimes people don’t want to help out because they think it’s gonna go for drugs or alcohol. I have 17 years sober. I go to do my laundry, food. The only thing i do is i smoke cigarettes. Food and stuff like that…I have my priorities,” says Tony.
Tony tells us he was turned away from the shelter because he holds up a sign for money, but, he says he’s been saving up and is only a few weeks from being able to afford his own place.
But in the meantime…
“I’ll take any help I can get. Even if it’s not a money, even if it’s a roof over my head. You want to give me a room? I’ll pay rent.”
Shane and Tony are just two of many people in the area fighting to make it through each day.
But, city officials tell us that there are plenty of resources out there to help people like them get back on their feet.
In part two of this special series, we hear from people on the other side, trying to help out those who need it while also keeping Bangor a safe place to live.
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