The man with 4,500 Facebook friends — and no place to live

You’d be hard-pressed to find a more compelling lead than this, from the Washington Post:

Eric Sheptock has 4,548 Facebook friends, 839 Twitter followers, two blogs and an e-mail account with 1,600 unread messages.

What he doesn’t have is a place to live.

And the surprises don’t stop there:

“I am a homeless homeless advocate,” he often tells people. That’s the line that hooks them, the one that gives Sheptock – an unemployed former crack addict who hasn’t had a permanent address in 15 years – his clout on the issue of homelessness.

His Facebook friends and Twitter followers include policymakers, advocates for the homeless and hundreds of college students who have heard him speak on behalf of the National Coalition for the Homeless.

Being homeless has become Sheptock’s full-time occupation. It’s work that has provided him with purpose and a sense of community. But it’s also work that has perpetuated his homelessness and, in a way, glorified it.

Read the rest.


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