Jayden Alexander’s road to gain housing, transportation, and employment has been a turbulent yet inspirational journey. As a child, Jayden began suffering from depression at the age of 10. He would come to discover that his mental health challenges also included ADHD and bipolar disorder. In addition to having parents who did not understand what he was going through, he also experienced incessant bullying and abuse at the hands of classmates. This turmoil would drive him to attempt suicide for the first time at 14 years old, but despite it all, he survived.

Jayden knew he was different at a young age, not only because of his learning disabilities but also because of his gender identity and orientation. At 18, he could no longer stay at his parents’ house. After a year-long stay at Covenant House in Florida, Jayden was desperate to leave and start over in a different state. He was lured to San Francisco, supposedly to sell skin products but soon would become the victim of a predator who punched Jayden in the face for not selling his products fast enough. After an ominous warning from a housemate, Jayden escaped, but this would mark the beginning of years of living on the streets and falling prey to all the harm that homelessness brings with it— including sexual assault, battery, and starvation.