Photo : Richard MaltaisPeople living on the street, the homeless people, beggars: all synonymous in the minds of many.

Except that you can beg and have a shelter. Or be without a home for a certain time, but not have to beg because you have some support—it’s just a matter of repositioning yourself, an “in-between" as they say. Or maybe you live in your car. Or you live in flimsy, makeshift settlements because of the housing conditions in your country.

There are also the "hidden" homeless, invisible to statistics because they found safe harbor with friends or in overcrowded and unrecorded housing.

Sometimes entire populations are forced to migrate because of natural disasters, wars and an economic crisis. Many of these migrants then live in refugee camps, others try their luck abroad. Even then, their situation remains difficult.

UNESCO argues that the problem of homelessness, or that of housing insecurity, is on the rise worldwide, affecting one billion people.

Rich countries are not exempt from it. For example, the number of homeless people in Western Europe has reached a record level unseen since the end of World War II. In the United States, in the state of Florida, almost a third of families are reported now homeless as a result of the economic crisis.

The topic is vast. Examples are more widespread and more complex than they seem at first. In this dossier, we will look into some aspects of this matter, both in developed and developing countries.

When Migrating Turns to Tragedy

Interview with the Secretary General of Caritas Internationalis, a global confederation of 165 Catholic organizations working in humanitarian emergencies and international development.

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Slums: A Precarious In-Between

Life in the slums is similar in many aspects to homelessness.

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Kenya : Portrait of a Situation

One of the largest slums in Africa is located in Kenya. A group of Quebec missionaries depict life in Kibera, the "city" outside Nairobi.

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Homelessness in the Land of the Rising Sun

Photo : Matthew McVickarDeveloped countries are also experiencing homelessness. This is a relatively new phenomenon in Japan, which has difficulty fitting in those who were excluded from the economy.

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A Christian Point of View

Before the great suffering caused by unwanted mobility, the Church acts and also challenges with strong words, especially on the World Day of Migrants and Refugees.

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Waiting for the Bus?

Dans la rue is an organization that provides homeless youth in Montreal a Van where they can find food, warmth and comfort.

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Interview with Brian McDonough, Director of the Social Action Office for the Archdiocese of Montreal

Mr. McDonough presents some local initiatives and welcomes the new government policy on homelessness. The profile of abandoned people has become more complex as well as the challenges associated. 

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Faces of the street

Here is a photo album with a few faces in the street, moments sketched from life, encounters with homeless people.
Photos: Heryckqa (Erika Arrieta)

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