Earlier this month, the man known as the federal homelessness czar visited the Bay Area. Matthew Dougherty met with San Francisco homeless programs director Jeff Kositsky and Mayor London Breed, discussing a nine-million dollar boost to grants provided for the city. The meeting drew media coverage, but as we know, money won’t necessarily bring lasting solutions. We know that in part because we read Street Spirit.
Street Spirit is a publication largely written about homelessness by homeless people. It’s a publication of Youth Spirit Artworks, focused on stories of poverty and social justice in the East Bay, and it’s been in print for over two decades. Today, more than 100 vendors sell the papers as an alternative to panhandling.
Co-founder Terry Messman retired as editor this year, and his replacement is Bay Area native Alastair Boone. The UC Berkeley graduate sat down with KALW’s Ben Trefny to talk about her vision for bringing Street Spirit to broader audiences.