Frank’s Wild Years

I have ADHD and although I was homeless, I liked the life outside very much. I had my backpack, my clothes, my cooker and gas: I did not need anymore than that.

Coming from Germay

Frank has been homeless for 30 years. Originally he is from Germany. Early this year Frank became sick. He developed Tuberculosis and Hepatitis C. He needs treatment for that. He is on a waiting list. According to Frank this treatment will cost about €48.000.

In a former life

Frank has used drugs for many years. He injected himself with anything that can be injected. He spent 9 years in jail for robbery, theft and using drugs in public. He was brought back to Germany about 5 times and thrown into the slammer the same amount of times.

Before he became sick he drank about 25 litres of beer per day. Nowadays he drinks about 2 litres per day, because the doctor advised him to. Not using alcohol is no option, because his doctor says stopping is life threatening.

Housing First

He lives in a small apartment on a hill with a view over the bay of Cascais. That is the Portuguese beach resort where we met Frank. He loves his brand new place and enjoys the comfort of having a steady home. He doubts if he will ever return to his wanderings through Europe. His identity papers are not up to date and that is why he can’t apply for benefits at this moment. If the local government decides to allow him benefits he will have to live of €170 per month. Frank now lives of the money that is offered him while begging on the streets. Some days he collects about €40, but that is rare. Most of the time it is less then €10. He is not able to work as a street artist right now because of his illness.

Everybody knows Frank

There are no people that do not know me in this town. If I don’t have money, I can go to the nearest restaurant and they will give me some food.

Street Artist

I wanted to take Frank back home and offer him a room in my house. I do not know kinder people than Frank. During an average day you will find him on a square in the Centre of the village, accompanied by other bohemians. While we were interviewing Frank other curous people where circling around us. Frank made them move elsewhere with a subtle movement of his left hand. Frank was all wisdom and lived experience. He is the living embodiment of ‘a one-liner’.  He states ample in a short amount of time.

Doing it all over again

He would do his life all over again. I became the man I am now and I feel very ok with that. I can forgive, but not forget. He hopes people will treat him with the same respect.

Casa Primeiro

We wish Frank the best life you can think of. Casa Primeiro, the Housing First program that we are visiting this week, housed Frank in a fast and practical way. It’s as easy as that. Giving away homes solves homelessness.

The hotel with the most stars in the world

If you ask Frank what is the best Hotel in the world, he points his finger at the blue sky.

The Hotel with the most Stars in the World is the Sky. You have the most beautiful roof of stars over your head and hé, guess what, it’s free!

Or in Frank’s very own words



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