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photo Almost Home
By Cynthia L. Wade

This film offers an unsentimental look at the lives of children in a Bronx homeless shelter. Nine year-old Ranier and eleven year-old Frank dream of living in castles and taking karate lessons; in reality, they live in an uncertain world where waling to school means stepping over crack vials and dodging gunfire. Ranier has witnessed his father being shot, and worries about his mother being raped. "I'm in a school where nobody knows me," he says. "One girl asked me where I lived. I couldn't tell her I was homeless." Frank endures taunts from classmates and frustration at feeling left out. "I want a lot of things: skates and swimming lessons," he says, "but I can't get them. That's how we got to live."

At the center of their world is "Big Dave," a recreation counselor who teaches them friendship, courage and self-respect. Eventually their families make the transition to permanent housing. Narrated by the children themselves, this is an evocative portrait of poverty and youth.

DVD version only has both closed-captions and audio descriptions.

25 minutes
© 1995
Purchase $199 DVD
Order No. QA-198
ISBN (DVD) 1-57295-964-9
close captioned

Reviews
"Invaluable for sensitizing volunteers to the realities of family life in transitional housing." Suzanne Immerman, New York Cares

Awards & Conference Screenings
Silver Apple, National Educational Media Network
South Bronx Film & Video Festival
Association for Childhood Education International

Related Films
Healthcare for the Homeless: Looks at several innovative programs healthcare workers have created to meet the needs of homeless patients.

Streetlife: Introduces us to several displaced and homeless families, and to the often over-burdened people who try to help them.

What's Wrong With This Picture: Families with children now make up more than a third of America's homeless. This video offers first-person insights into the realities of the homeless working poor.

Peter, Donald, Willie, Pat: Video portraits of four homeless men living in a respite shelter, this video documents both their problems and their survival strategies.

A Healing Place: Profiles the staff and guests of a respite program for homeless and elderly patients who have been discharged from the hospital but are unable to manage their own care at home or on the street.


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