Costa Mesa Homeless: Dave’s Story [Start Here]

Dave & Dave

Me on the left, Dave on the right — a day after your gift of a night in a hotel.

Dave is 40 years old, and homeless.  He lives under a bridge with 2 friends he met on the street.

I met Dave in a Target parking lot, and have been sharing his story on this blog. In response, you’ve showered him with an amazing outpouring of love and support.

If you’re looking to jump to these stories in sequence, here’s where to start:

  • Costa Mesa Homeless: My Time With Dave (Part 4):  Since readers have entrusted over $1,200 in donations to Dave and his story, I decided to take a tour of the Orange County Rescue Mission, which is where Dave intends to live.  I’ve included some pics — it is an amazing place!
  • [Video] Costa Mesa Homeless: My Time With Dave (Part 5):  Over sandwiches at Panera, Dave reads everything written about him on this blog (including your comments), and writes a thank-you note.  Also, he decides to film a short video!  See the man whose life you are changing.

How You Can Help

Many of you have asked how you can be a part of writing Dave’s new life story, and here are a few things you can do:

  • Share this story.  Send it to your friends, post it to Facebook, send links via email.
  • Leave Dave a comment on this blog.  Tell him where you’re from, and how you heard about his story.  I’m going to show him these posts soon.  If you have words of encouragement, leave them here.  He’ll love reading them.
  • Please continue to pray – not only for Dave, but also for me to discern what to do with the energy and momentum these stories have created.  Where is it leading?
  • If you have physical donations, I can arrange to pick them up.  If you have questions about what Dave needs, leave those in the comments.

Dave’s life is being changed by people he doesn’t even know, from across the globe.  Will you join in making a difference in his life?  Every amount counts, no matter how small.  Donate here.

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About David Rosendahl
Husband, father, co-founder of MindFireInc, two-time Inc500 software company. I love building things.

16 Responses to Costa Mesa Homeless: Dave’s Story [Start Here]

  1. Joseph Manos says:

    Dave, I just made a $100 donation to Dave and his cause. I made this mainly because I believe in what you are doing but more importantly my hope is that Dave will be uplifted by your efforts (and the efforts of others).

    As a new father and very busy businessman I hope he doesn’t take for granted the investment you are making in him and giving up your personal time to make a difference in his life.

    I hope he will be uplifted by the investment you are making in him (others too) and not waste this opportunity but seize the day to grow from the experience to better his life and get back on track.

    Failure to do so would be a terrible wasted opportunity for a fresh start.

    Let him know that his cause has reached all the way up here in Northern California.

    Continued success with Dave!

    • Hey Joe, thank you for your kindness and encouragement. You’re right that being a new dad, having a business to push forward, and being a husband are all very time-consuming.

      The time I spend with Dave has to come from somewhere, and usually it is to the exclusion of my family. I’m thankful my wife is supportive, and that she encourages me to do it.

      I believe Dave is taking the right steps, and I hope to be able to report back on some tangible improvements soon!

      Thank you for your help!

  2. Scott says:

    My concern is whether money will truly solve Dave’s problems. Does he struggle with addiction? If so, maybe he needs rehabilitation. Most cases of homelessness in America are due to some sort of addiction. Money only feeds the addiction and usually disappears in a matter of days and even hours. I don’t know his story, but I am a little concerned that this money won’t provide a long term solution.

    • Hey Scott,

      Thanks for the thoughtful comment. To answer your question: No, I do not see (or hear of) any struggle with addiction, thank God. But your point is valid — I would question whether money can help in that situation.

      Regarding the majority of cases of homelessness in America being due to addiction, can you reply to this post with the source of that data? I’d love to review that and see what the findings are.

      I think that my goal in posting Dave’s and J’s stories is simply to reflect their stories as they tell them to me. I never anticipated that people would contribute money and donations in the volume they have :)

      What I hope to do, by allowing people like Dave to share his hopes and struggles with you is to show that everyone, regardless of their position in life, is as valid as anyone else.

      For me, it is incredible easy to ignore others — especially dirty, smelly, “scary” looking people. Typically, I don’t look at them, or I don’t talk to them, and thus I fall into constructing my own narrative that affirms my (very!) limited world view.

      Know what I mean?

      • Hawkee says:

        I don’t have any statistics, but I have spent a some time reading and studying this subject. I find it fascinating how individuals can end up in such a situation and whether or not they can recover. I’ve been reading Chris Arnade’s blog and just about 99% of the cases he’s studied are related to drug abuse: http://arnade.tumblr.com – He give his subjects very human faces that really helps to bring awareness to such situations. I also find shows like Intervention interesting because you can see the outcome. Many times even with family support these individuals cannot recover, but it is encouraging to see some who do. It’s really just God’s mercy.

        • Amen brother, I hear you. I am meeting with someone who has studied this problem, and I’ll ask him about the data to support the idea that the majority of homelessness in America is due to addiction, as well as what best-practices have been developed to deal with it.

          Thank you for the comment!

          • Kristi Olzeske says:

            The Natioanl Alliance to End Homelessness is a great source of National Data on Homelessness issues. Chemical dependancy is certainly a variable for a large margin but what almost all homeless have in common is – they are poor and are one critical incident away from being on the street.

            • Hi Kristi,

              I really appreciate your reply, and will dig into the data at the source you mentioned.

              My gut tells me something similar to what you’ve stated, which is that many are very close to the edge. I believe that many do not realize how close they actually are (even those who feel comfortable). This particular issue is something that constantly makes me stop and give thanks.

              Thanks for stopping by and participating in the discussion!

              Yours,

              -dr-

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  6. Hey brother! I would also be interested in seeing this “data” on the majority of homelessness being due to addiction. If you find any numbers comparing the incidence of drug/alcohol addiction in the homeless population compared to the non-homeless send it my way will you?

    • Hey Mari! I haven’t found the data yet, but I will let you know when I come across it.

      However, I did find that nearly half of all Americans are one emergency away from ruin: http://davidrosendahl.com/2013/03/09/44-of-americans-are-one-emergency-from-financial-ruin/

      Take a look.

      -dr-

  7. Pingback: 44% of Americans Are One Emergency From Financial Ruin | Akathisia: Life In Motion -- David Rosendahl

  8. Pingback: A Letter From Homeless Dave | Akathisia: Life In Motion -- David Rosendahl

  9. Pingback: Costa Mesa Blogger Aids the Homeless | Akathisia: Life In Motion -- David Rosendahl

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