Melvin is homeless in Santa Monica, California. He sleeps in his car and works whatever jobs he can to survive. Melvin has a master degree in Molecular Science and Nanotechnology, yet he still cannot find employment that pays enough to cover the cost of an apartment in Los Angeles.
Melvin sometimes feels like his situation is never going to end, but he tries to stay hopeful. It’s not that Melvin is not trying. He’s applied to over a thousand jobs in the last seventeen months.
Melvin says he contacted every single homeless services provider in the city including the Santa Monica Mayor’s Office. Melvin used every single resource and referral given to him to no avail. Sadly, the homeless support system is not set up to help people like Melvin who are educated and healthy, and there is just not enough support for all the homeless people that need help.
The public believes that anyone who is homeless can ask for help and they receive the support they need. It doesn’t work that way. This is why we all must advocate for more support and for more services to get people off the streets and into housing!
Melvin started to channel all the anger he has from sleeping on the ground and in his car into filmmaking. He started making movies on his phone. Melvin began just to vlog, but then he got serious and turned his videos into a story. Melvin has now completed one documentary on his life on the streets and has started to work on another film.
Melvin wants to give back. He is hoping to one to go to medical school. Melvin continues to look for work hoping to find employment that will pay enough for an apartment. Melvin also continues to go down the path of becoming an aspiring filmmaker. One of his movies has been accepted into a film festival.
Melvin has overcome many obstacles in life. This smart young man and his positive attitude will go far. Melvin just needs a little help to get out of homelessness. If you’d like to help him personally, here is a link to his GoFundMe page: https://www.gofundme.com/r5q8jn7s
For more information about Melvin’s creative works as an author and filmmaker click here: http://melvinsewell.com
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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.