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Homeless Rock Stars Project Roots for the Underdogs

Homeless Rock Stars

“With a rebel yell, Homeless Rock Stars unapologetically: Confronts the stigma, Promotes the underdog and Leads the way in restoring the relationship between the homeless and the community at large.”

What does homelessness look like in America?

According to the State of Homelessness in America 2015” report by National Alliance to End Homelessness, the total homeless population in 2014 was more than 578,000 people.

These numbers include all types of people — individuals, people in families, unsheltered, sheltered, family households, chronically homeless individuals, veterans, unaccompanied children and youth, and chronically homeless persons in families. Not all are uneducated, mentally ill, dirty or lazy, which too many assume when they think of the homeless.

Many separate themselves from homelessness, avoiding the topic because it is uncomfortable. The project Homeless Rock Stars does not. It was started to bring people together, regardless of their social standing. It seeks to stop the them versus us mentality and establish connection among all people.

“One of the main problems with homelessness is the physical and psychological barrier that is instantly and permanently erected by ‘us’ between those we perceive as homeless and ourselves,” reads the Homeless Rock Stars website.

Homeless Rock Stars is a two-fold effort. The first part involves inviting the homeless to a special event where they are treated like rock stars. They are fed delicious meals, pampered (hair and makeup done), photographed, and “INNERviewed” by leaders in their community. A month later, an art exhibit is set up to display the portraits and interviews. The homeless rock stars, community leaders and locals are invited to attend to mix, mingle and learn more about what can be done for the homeless.

The main contributors to the project are photographer Nigel Skeet, makeup artist Bethany Hill, musician Shimon Moore (former Sick Puppies frontman), caterer Jessie Valley and outreach director Bryan Ha. Skeet recently recruited Moore to create a song and video for this movement, which will be released in October 2015.

To learn more about the Homeless Rock Stars project, including how you can help, visit the official website.

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