UPDATE: ROCKEY IS NO LONGER HOMELESS! LA Family helped get her into housing but there was no money to furnish the apartment. Rockey is sleeping on the floor. She desperately needs a refrigerator. 100% of all donations will go to furnish Rockey’s apartment https://www.gofundme.com/help-furnish-rockeys-new-apartment
When I went to visit Rockey at her tent, she started to show me how she made a gate to keep people out. I wasn’t yet set up with my camera but I started recording video. Rockey shows me how she ties a rope to the gate and then sleeps with the rope so if anyone tries to get in, she’ll feel it and wake up. Homeless people and especially homeless woman are constantly of being attacked. NO ONE SHOULD HAVE TO LIVE LIKE THAT!
Some of you may remember Rockey from our behind the scenes vlog on the virtual reality movie made possible through a partnership with Oculus’s VR For Good, film director Rose Troche, and Invisible People. You can watch that video here: https://youtu.be/2G3oeDj9QGw Thanks to the help from Eric Montoya and LA Family Housing, Rose was connected to Rockey and the two became friends. The VR film is about Rockey’s story and Rockey also plays herself in the VR experience.
Rockey has lived homeless in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles County for over three years. She has lived in this tent for about a year. Rockey says she had to make it as much of a home as possible.
Rockey had a bad turn of events that snowballed until she had no choice but to live in a tent. Rockey doesn’t want to draw off the system forever. She wants to work. Rockey wants to be like normal people. Go home at the end of the day. Have a meal and watch television.
Rockey says life can change in an instant. If you don’t have money to pay rent, you’re going to try to survive. You build a tent. You get a trap. You grab cardboard. You do anything to key yourself warm at night.
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Since its launch in November 2008, Invisible People has leveraged the power of video and the massive reach of social media to share the compelling, gritty, and unfiltered stories of homeless people from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. The vlog (video blog) gets up close and personal with veterans, mothers, children, layoff victims and others who have been forced onto the streets by a variety of circumstances. Each week, they’re on InvisiblePeople.tv, and high traffic sites such as YouTube, Twitter and Facebook, proving to a global audience that while they may often be ignored, they are far from invisible.
Invisible People goes beyond the rhetoric, statistics, political debates, and limitations of social services to examine poverty in America via a medium that audiences of all ages can understand, and can’t ignore. The vlog puts into context one of our nation’s most troubling and prevalent issues through personal stories captured by the lens of Mark Horvath – its founder – and brings into focus the pain, hardship and hopelessness that millions face each day. One story at a time, videos posted on InvisiblePeople.tv shatter the stereotypes of America’s homeless, force shifts in perception and deliver a call to action that is being answered by national brands, nonprofit organizations and everyday citizens now committed to opening their eyes and their hearts to those too often forgotten.
Invisible People is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to changing the way we think about people experiencing homelessness.