Castro homeless man dons GoPro to show what it’s like

Adam Reichart is a homeless man in his 40′s that spends a lot of time in the Castro, mostly outside Mollie Stones, selling Street Sheets in order to pay for food, shelter, and other necessities. He has been clean and sober for the past 4 years and is part of a social experiment called HomelessGoPro which outfits homeless volunteers with donated GoPro video cameras to help document their plight.

HomelessGoPro Creative Producer Kevin Adler says the goal of the project is to, “build empathy, enable the non-homeless to walk with a homeless person for a few moments, and to explore how a camera lens associated with ‘hardcore’ activities like snowboarding and surfing can showcase courage and difficulty of another sort.”

The HomelessGoPro team met Adam through the homeless direct giving platform HandUp which collects donations for homeless people that can be redeemed for basic needs like food, clothing, and medical care. Through Adam’s HandUp profile page, Adam has been able to pay for new dentures and weekly stays at SRO’s in the city.

The video that Adam takes of people that pass by him has been compiled into a few videos which are available for viewing on the HomelessGoPro YouTube channel.

It’s not clear how this project will actually help reduce the homeless population in San Francisco, but it does reveal how complacent many people have become. Seeing life, literally, from the perspective of the homeless is an interesting way to bring visibility to the issue.

Roy McKenzie

Roy has been a Castro resident since 2010 and is passionate about politics, camping, and food. Follow his babbling on Twitter.

12 Responses

  1. Yulia says:

    “It’s not clear how this project will actually help reduce the homeless population in San Francisco”

    Really? That’s only if it is also unclear that to reduce the homeless population, the rest of us need to learn to feel compassion for the homeless and create programs that provide a much stronger safety net than what we have now.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 9

  2. Mitch Mansfield says:

    The homeless situation in SF is a result of the city historically being very tolerant of homeless people. We don’t make them “move on” like other cities do. The homeless activists in the city try to step up to the plate and take care of the situation and they are very vocal. But after many years, the situation remains the same. I don’t think there is a lack of compassion for the homeless. I think there is a bit of resignation in the city, a feeling that the problem will just never go away.

    If you talk with the police, they have two terms for street people. Homeless is one. Transient is another. The transients have made a clear choice that this is indeed the lifestyle they want to live. I don’t think any safety net will help the transient. They are not interested.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 4

  3. bluesparrow says:

    It’s inevitable in the near-future some douchebag tech entrepreneur will figure out some way to “monetize” the homeless.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 7 Thumb down 9

  4. Liv says:

    I think it’s a complicated issue, I don’t think anyone likes to see someone suffer. It’s not clear how we can help. Most homeless, based on what I read have some mental or substance abuse while others under 25 are LGBT thrown out of their homes. The Larkin project is a great venue and they do great work to support LGBT homeless youths. What bothers me most is seeing single mothers with children panhandling downtown along Montgomery Street asking for money. Really what is the solution to all this, seriously not being dense here…. Number one obvious thing is to try stop your friends from using drugs any way you can, not promoting it or making it coll. That’s’ ONE of the many root causes…

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

    • Mitch Mansfield says:

      All drugs lead to homelessness. Hmmmm. Let me think about that for a bit and get back to you. It will be after 4/20 for sure, not sooner.

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      • Peter says:

        “All drugs lead to homelessness.” That is precisely NOT what Liv said. “Most homeless have substance abuse issues” is not an untrue, or controversial, statement.

        Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

        • Mitch Mansfield says:

          But she said “stop your friends from using…” I think that falls into the “all drugs lead to homelessness” category. If not, why would she want ALL people to get off of ALL drugs?

          Happy 420 day to you and yours. May we all keep off the streets.

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  5. Oh jeez, another hetero homeless sucking on the gay community’s teat. I know about Adam (have for years)…he in no way shows any regard or interest for gay people. A selfish boor at best.

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  6. rblack says:

    For a city that spends so much more money, time, and resources then Id argue any other city, you would think we’d have solved this problem by now.

    Maybe it’s time we look at the way all of these resources are being allocated and managed, because the status quo clearly isn’t working.

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