Amid an ongoing housing crisis, WHUT-TV’s premiere of “Homelessness Reframed,” on Tuesday, Nov. 28 is shifting the narrative surrounding the D.C. homeless population. Host, Morgyn Wood, takes viewers inside Miriam’s Kitchen, a local non-profit combatting homelessness through meals and a variety of programming.
As the culinary staff prepared meals for those experiencing food insecurity, Wood engaged in an in-depth round table discussion with local Washington, D.C. residents who are representatives, advocates, and formerly un-housed people.
Among the guests featured in the engaging discussion was Rachel Ellison, an Advisory Board member of Miriam’s Kitchen who overcame homelessness after 17 years. Ellison reflected on her emotions and experience as she endured close to two decades of housing insecurity.
“I was chronically homeless for 17 years and people stepped over top of me and no one called my name. No one hugged me. No one touched me,” reflected Ellison. “I became this angry defensive person all the time because I felt so alone— I felt invisible.”
The program offers an analysis of the stigma placed on the homeless population to challenge viewers' perceptions while humanizing those who have or are currently experiencing homelessness.
Ellison reflects on how Miriam’s Kitchen helped her gain her humanity back. For years, Ellison had been conditioned to believe she was unworthy of dignity and compassion. She credits Miriam’s Kitchen for their programming and intentionality in shifting how she once perceived herself.
“It was an amazing feeling to have someone recognize me as a human being,” said Ellison.“I knew I wasn’t invisible anymore and that was the beginning of my journey out of the homeless population.”
The hour-long program offers in-depth discussion, resources, and ways to help us change the way viewers engage with the homeless population daily. To learn more, you can watch this programming by visiting this link, or by visiting the WHUT-TV YouTube channel.