Joseph Cantu of Pontiac, Michigan has recently been forced out of his home not long after his wife left him and his 5 kids. He had no one to help care for his youngsters, so had no choice but to prioritize them over anything else, resulting in him getting fired from his job as a car polisher.
Joseph has said that it's been practically impossible to find a shelter in Southeast Michigan that will actually accept a man with children, and is on a waiting list for one of the few shelters that do.
So, he and his children had to shuffle from one sleeping position to another, spending many nights held up in a van.
"I never thought this would happen to myself anyway, but what bothers me the most is that they [his kids] have to endure it as well," he told Fox 2. "Luckily, they're small enough they probably won't remember it."
But just minutes after Fox 2 shared his story, the calls and messages changed everything for Joseph and his family.
"Several nights people would donate some money here and there so that we could sleep inside a motel room," Joseph said of his experience with his kids as a homeless family.
Joseph was overwhelmed when people wanted to help him, literally minutes after the story was shared by Fox...
"I have an interview Monday morning at the Pontiac airport," Joseph explained of one of many job interviews he's received since his story became known to the world. "The outreach we received was tremendous because people are routing for me and my kids," he said.
"After this is all said and done, I just hope we can start creating a plan for other men with children that might fall into the same situation."
Joseph then heartwarmingly thanked everyone who wanted to help him and his beautiful family in his time of need: "I want to say thank you to all of the people who reached out. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, we do appreciate that and God bless you guys."
Almost 60,000 families with children (57,971) are homeless on any given night in the United States, according to the 2017 federal Point-in-Time count. Nationally, that means 7.4 out of every 10,000 families are homeless.
Homelessness is a devastating problem that needs to be tackled urgently... especially when it comes to children being left on the streets. We hope Joseph and his children will find accommodation soon!