Sunday, November 11, 2007

Smarty Sunday Book Recommendation: Without A Net


This past week I have written a lot about homelessness, as it affects children and teenagers. So, for Smarty Sunday, I'd like to recommend a book called Without A Net, by Michelle Kennedy.
This is the autobiography of a woman who became homeless, along with her three small children.
After one of her children is severely injured, and has to be hospitalized, due to Michelle's husband's negligence (he was supposed to be caring for the children while Michelle worked to support the family) Michelle leaves him, piling her children into the car and heading south. Only twenty-four years old and somewhat naive, Michelle assumes that she will very quickly be able to find a job, and get an apartment. She imagines having to stay in a motel with the children for a week or two until she gets everything arranged.
But although Michelle almost immediately finds a job in the new town she chooses to live in, it becomes clear that she won't be able to save up for an apartment while also paying for a motel room. She must resort to sleeping in the car or at campgrounds with the children, leaving them in the car while she works long hours at her new job, and struggling to pay for each and every meal they eat.
This story counteracts the stereotype of a homeless person who just refuses to get a job or cannot work due to drug addiction. It shows how easy it is for an ordinary person to become homeless... just a short series of unfortunate events can lead you into this snare of being unable to make ends meet!
Michelle's story is also one of inspiration, though. She did not give up, no matter how hard things got, and she refused to let her family disintegrate. Make sure to check this book out, for an autobiography you'll never forget!

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