Stories

For Chronically Homeless Mainers, Housing First Can Be A Lifesaving Solution

February 8, 2020

Portland is currently working through the long and contentious process of building a new emergency shelter where people who are homeless can access services and stay on a night-by-night basis until they are able to move on. But for about 20 percent of the homeless population¬†emergency shelters or longer-term solutions that mandate counseling or sobriety…

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Two Years After Being Put In Foster Care, Forgiveness Is Still Out Of Reach

October 30, 2019

Kids in foster care are often coping with the aftermath of abuse or neglect, along with the added trauma of being removed from their home. They‚Äôre grappling with this past, while living in the shadow of an uncertain future. The Public‚Äôs Radio is telling their stories in our series, Living In Limbo: Foster Families And…

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Seeking Support, Homeless Maine Teens Are Often Forced To Leave Their Communities

April 17, 2019

Recent financial trends have not been kind to some organizations serving homeless youth, especially those in rural Maine. Programs and youth shelters in Rockland, Skowhegan and Rumford have all closed over the last dozen years. With fewer resources, teens in rural areas have had to face a tough choice: stay within the community they know…

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Mikaylah arrived in Maine about three years ago from Connecticut, where she and her sisters had been raised by their single dad. When he passed away, they moved to Biddeford to be with family. Photo by Brett Plymale for Maine Public

Maine School Districts Under Pressure Amid Spike In Homeless Youth

April 16, 2019

Maine is seeing a growing number of young people, from preschool through 12th grade, who are homeless or displaced. They are moving into shelters, couch surfing with other families and, in rare cases, camping or living in cars. According to the National Center for Homeless Education the number of homeless youth increased by 30 percent in just two years.

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Tom Johnson owns and runs the Birchwood Inn in Lenox, Massachusetts. He says bookings have decreased due to competition from Airbnb rentals. Photo by Nancy Eve Cohen for NEPR

Airbnb Is Tough Competition For Berkshire Inns; New Massachusetts State Law May Have Impact

February 14, 2019

Residents of the Berkshires have rented out rooms in their homes for decades as a way to make extra income. But some innkeepers now say their room rentals are down because of competition from short-term rentals, like those found on Airbnb.

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Kennekca Kindell (right) and her 14-year-old daughter, Kanija Kindell, visit the Dunkin' Donuts in Pawtucket where Kennekca works. Photo by Avory Brookins for The Public's Radio

Despite Protections, Rhode Island’s Lower-Income Utility Customers Risk Losing Power

December 13, 2018

Temperatures are dropping and for many people, that means higher gas bills to heat their homes. But not everyone can easily afford those bills, and missing payments puts some people at risk of getting their power shut off.

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Oliva Llano visits the food pantry. Photo by Nancy Eve Cohen for NEPR

Food Pantry In Pittsfield, Massachusetts, Tries To Ease Stigma Of Getting Help

October 18, 2018

Early on a Wednesday morning in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, a line of people perused boxes of fresh apples and green beans, frozen meat, and bags of bagels and biscuits at the South Congregational Church Community Food Pantry.

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Angelina Arroyo sprays her driveway down during a hot afternoon in Punta Santiago. Her husband had a heart attack shortly after the hurricane last year and passed away soon after. Photo by Jesse Costa for WBUR

In Punta Santiago, It’s A Microcosm Of A Battered Puerto Rico

October 4, 2018

A middle-aged woman sat¬†over a pail of water, a blue umbrella shielding her from the scorching sun. Surrounded by a wreckage of branches and twisted metal sheets, Angelina Arroyo Rivera¬†salvaged what remained of her belongings ‚ÄĒ some silverware and some plastic containers, a blue tarp, a red purse, a white blouse.

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A person gathers essential belongings at House of Mercy. Photo by Quincy Walters for WBUR

Prayers, Canned Goods And ‘The Sounds That I Miss’: Adjusting To Life In Merrimack Valley

September 21, 2018

Since last Thursday, the House of Mercy has been busier than usual. The part shelter/part church/part donations center is among the places people affected by the Merrimack Valley gas explosions can go for help.

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A photo of Carla Gomez' backyard in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. Photo courtesy of Carla Gomez

After Maria, Displaced Puerto Ricans Start to Call New Hampshire Home

September 21, 2018

Not far from downtown Nashua, Carla Gomez is hosting a 77th birthday party for her uncle.

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