Voices from the Breach

These are four profiles on former homeless people who found sanctuary at Repairers of the Breach, the only daytime homeless shelter in Milwaukee.

Series by Rob Gebelhoff, Photos by Valeria CardenasPublished on December 5, 2013

Anthony Washington, 18 months homeless

Anthony, 48, ended an 18-month period of homelessness in March 2013 and continues to struggle with his addiction to smoking cocaine after spending a combined total of 25 years in prison.

Dennis Heller, 6 months homeless

Heller became homeless for the first time in his life in December 2012. Now, he owns Orbit Enterprise, a licensed firm that collects junk found in the alleys of Milwaukee and sells it to Alter Trading Corporation, a metal recycling company.

Sharona Smith, 4 months homeless

Despite having her own place to stay, Sharona, 34, comes to Repairers almost every Saturday to volunteer her time for the organization, which she says is her home.

Mark Young, 14 months homeless

Mark has worked at Repairers as its manager for more than a year and was homeless for a total of 14 months before working at the center. Despite his experience with homelessness, Mark maintains a belief that Repairers of the Breach does not help its members.