Seráh Blain: Falling in and out of cracks


By Sarah Henry

Serah BlainSeráh Blain continues to live on the streets, immersed in homelessness, to raise awareness of the trials and tribulations that homeless people struggle with in everyday, routine life. Since our last update, Seráh has encountered new struggles, including physical representations of her time living on the streets—heat rash, bruises, scrapes, and scratches. Perhaps the most emotional story in Seráh’s recent accounts is the eye-opening tale of “Tiffany,” a member of the street community that Seráh has become close to.

She is a witty, spunky, beautiful 19-year-old young woman. I believe she’s schizophrenic, but I am certainly not an expert. She has suffered some abuse in her life. She is often confused about where she is. She misses her brother but when I ask about him, she usually doesn’t remember where he is, although sometimes she says he’s in the Navy and will come get her when he has money. She tends to get very defensive when I give her advice; for example, one of the days we were all together, she was beginning to show signs of heat exhaustion but was very antagonistic when I asked her to get in the shade and drink water. However, when the young men in our group made similar suggestions, she always did whatever they said. . . . The last time anyone saw her before she disappeared, she was walking with two women I am told are known prostitutes. We didn’t see her for days. . . .

Tiffany came back yesterday. She was excited about how much money she made, and how she could help other people now. I don’t really think I need to say more than that.

The funds that Seráh is raising, just two dollars for every homeless person in Phoenix last year, will help keep the Madison Street Veterans Association’s women’s shelter open and functional, giving women a place to stay when faced with the harsh realities of living on the streets.

Seráh has now raised almost half of her goal of $56,310. She has been homeless since Monday, August 19, and is now just a couple of days short of a full month. It’s not too late to donate—the faster Seráh meets her goal, the less time she’ll have to spend on the streets.

You can donate to Seráh and her partners, the Camelback Crossroads Rotary Club, the Flagstaff Freethinkers, World Faith, and the Beyond Belief Network, at, and you can follow Seráh’s own updates and reflections at her blog.