University of Southern Indiana

Evansville native to share homelessness journey as part of annual Symposium

USI to host screening of “Lost Angels: Skid Row is My Home” documentary

Evansville native to share homelessness journey as part of annual Symposium

USI to host screening of “Lost Angels: Skid Row is My Home” documentary
1/18/2018 | University Communications
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Evansville native Terri “Detroit” Hughes will share her remarkable journey from Skid Row to the movie screen during a public screening of the documentary film “Lost Angels: Skid Row is My Home” at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, February 19, in Carter Hall in the University Center at the University of Southern Indiana. This free, public event is associated with the Symposium on Homelessness, a student activity earlier in the day for which Hughes is the keynote speaker.

Hughes travels the country, conducting presentations on homelessness, poverty, mental illness and drug addiction. In 2014, she first shared her story at USI during the Symposium on Homelessness, and she also answered questions following a screening of “The Soloist,” in which she plays herself: a homeless, 88-pound woman with a drug addiction and mental illness living on Skid Row in Los Angeles.

In “Lost Angels: Skid Row is My Home,” viewers will follow the journeys of Hughes and seven other individuals who lived in the area of downtown Los Angeles, California, that contains one of the largest populations of homeless people in the United States. The documentary, narrated by Catherine Keener, also spotlights outreach programs that are helping many to recover from mental illness and substance abuse and to find stability.

“Hearing Terri Hughes speak is a unique opportunity to learn from someone’s personal experience of being homeless,” said Julie St. Clair, clinical assistant professor of nursing and chair of the symposium committee. “Her story of overcoming many obstacles in her life is remarkable. We hope this film and the symposium will keep the dialogue going about strategies to combat chronic homelessness.”

This is the sixth year that USI will host this event to educate senior-level students on the challenges related to homelessness they may face when they enter the workforce. The symposium is a collaboration between USI, Indiana University School of Medicine – Evansville, Ivy Tech Community College Evansville Campus and the University of Evansville.

Last year, nearly 400 student participants from all four academic institutions attended the Symposium on Homelessness, which included representatives from a wide variety of health-related fields as well as social work, teacher education and others. The event will include a volunteer fair that will offer opportunities for students to get involved with local community agencies that address homelessness directly. Representatives from local agencies will be on hand to answer questions and sign up volunteers.

St. Clair said the Symposium on Homelessness grew from Destination Home, an effort begun in 2004 to end homelessness in Vanderburgh County.

“In addition to raising awareness in the community, we also want to educate students about the needs of this group of people they will most likely encounter in their careers as teachers, doctors, nurses, social workers, etc.,” said St. Clair. “Knowing something about the challenges homeless men and women face every day will help our students know how to best care for them.”

For more information, contact Julie St. Clair at 812-465-1169 or jstclair@usi.edu

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