We asked homeless people who frequent Merge Café to tell us something about them that might surprise people.
“I don’t like how people think I love being homeless and poor.”
“People think homeless people don’t need love or relationships. Homeless people want and need to be loved.”
“I budget very carefully.
“I actually want to do well in life, and be successful.”
“I have been working as a sex worker for over 20 years. I have a Masters in Matauranga Maori and I am studying to be an accountant.”
“I was a volunteer firefighter. There was a car accident and I sat and talked to the patient until the ambos arrived. When she got out of hospital she found me and thanked me because I gave her a reason to live. Don’t know her name but remember the moment – I was 19, now I’m 57.
“Homelessness isn’t a choice. Try sleeping out yourself. You can’t sleep anywhere now, you get kicked out of everywhere. Try sleeping out for a week and you’ll see what I mean”
“I am a shoemaker by trade”
“I look like anyone else, but I sleep in a tunnel every night”
“I am a very good acoustic and acapella singer.”
“Every night when I go to sleep I ask Jesus to take me home to heaven. “
“I want to stop sleeping under a bridge.”