LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A UCLA junior is working to help as many as several hundred struggling students who have found themselves without a place to live.
Adam Swart says he didn’t realize how big of a problem student homelessness has become until he ran for student body president.
“The fees are going up at schools, people are losing their jobs, financial aid is getting cut,” he told CBS2.
Mike, a 23-year-old senior, says he would have never imagined he’d end up homeless.
“I’m doing what I can to get by, to cover my basic needs like sleep and food,” he said.
Homeless for eight weeks and just months away from graduation, Mike has been staying with friends and sleeping in the library. All he owns is in his backpack.
Swart came up with the “Places to Crash” category for Theunifieds.com, a UCLA classifieds site created by Dan Peel and Ryan Krebs.
The site now enables students to offer each other places to stay for one to two nights at a time.
“Finding a place stay and finding food and operating on two hours of sleep and a hungry stomach, I can only imagine the stress you’re under,” Swart says. “It’s very inspiring to me to see so many students that will persevere despite all odds.”
Mike says he’s thankful to have a new resource as he works to complete his degree.
“It’s a temporary patch of roughness that will be overcome with a little bit of optimism and hope,” he said.