Homeless people turn down help from shelters - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Homeless people turn down help from shelters

Spanky Marcellino Spanky Marcellino
Jaime Inoue Jaime Inoue
Nathan Ahoi Nathan Ahoi

MAKAHA (HawaiiNewsNow) - The homeless are on the move in Leeward Oahu.  About 200 people have been moved out of Keaau Beach Park. Now the massive cleanup effort begins.

Drive down Farrington Highway on the undeveloped side of Keaau Beach Park and for about a mile all you see is rubbish.  The city is trying to clean it up.  Crews are storing any valuables for 45 days and throwing the rest away.  No one was cited or arrested but there were a few hard feelings.

PHOTO GALLERY

View slideshow of homeless camp at Keaau Beach.

"We don't know what for do. We basically going around in one circle around here," said Spanky Marcellino, homeless. "We are not hopeless we're just homeless."

Spanky Marcellino, 44, has lived out here three years recycling scrap metal to feed his family.

"I feel like I'm battling one big monster and I'm losing. I'm losing badly," said Marcellino.

People loaded up what they could on trucks or trailers.  Some will stay with friends or family.  Others plan to go to the Waianae Boat Harbor.  Still others aren't sure where they'll sleep tonight.

"Up the valley to a place where I don't know if it's safe or not but I have nowhere else to go," said Jaime Inoue, when asked where she will go.

We're told some of the people have lit their things on fire rather than move it. There is frustration because some of the people that live out here are here by choice.

"It's too costly to live out there in public and society so I just choose to be out here. It's easier," said Jay Tavares, 35, homeless.

"Out here there is no responsibility, you don't have to worry about rent, electric, phone, basically all you have to worry about is your food," said Nathan Ahoi, homeless.

Nathan Ahoi is 36.  He's been living out here eight years and is one of the many that doesn't care to go to a shelter even though space is available.

"A lot of people out here just love the freedom because you live in the shelter you live in a structured environment. A lot of them say it reminds them of jail. Some don't want to put up with the rules and regulations and all that," said Ahoi.

As of April 3 the city was told by 11 different shelters they had 38 female vacancies, 98 male vacancies and 92 family vacancies.  Some shelters are specifically for woman, men or families. These include shelters on the Leeward coast and in Honolulu.

"If they decide not to go that's really up to them. We provide an opportunity for them to give them these alternatives and that's what we've been trying to do," said Al Tufono, Honolulu Parks & Recreation Deputy Director, who was told by the homeless shelters that there is enough bed space available to accommodate the people of Keaau Beach Park.

"Those people eventually will come. They will come one soul at a time," said Moki Nahoi, Zion Ipuka which is a transitional housing program for married couples.

Until then they'll have to find another place to call home.

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