'Homeless and Hungry' man stops in Jacksonville

A Florida teacher and Navy veteran is going homeless and choosing to live on the streets.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A Florida teacher and Navy veteran is going homeless and choosing to live on the streets.

Thomas Rebman says he's doing it to make a point.

His 'Homeless and Hungry' campaign has taken him across the state of Florida and now he's in Jacksonville. He's sharing his facts and truths about homelessness to anyone, including city leaders, who will listen.

Carrying just the basic necessities, Rebman spends his days figuring out his next meal and where he'll stay that night.

His idea to 'go homeless' started with a summer reading assignment for his students in Orlando. He says the response from the community quickly spiraled into something much bigger.

"The number of people who have told their stories of coming out of homelessness, the number of people who have started to help the homeless, the results are far beyond my expectations," he says.

Rebman is documenting his experiences for a meeting with the Governor's Council on Homelessness in February.

According to the agency's most recent report, Jacksonville has the sixth highest homeless population in the state, with 1,800 people living on the streets on any given night.

Rebman says solutions to decrease the homeless population will come with time, but for now, he wants to get the conversation started. He says there's a lot of misconceptions about why people are homeless.

You can't work your way out of homeless without help. You can't. I applied for 150 jobs and because I put homeless in the address, I didn't get any calls. That's sign-spinning, telemarketing, car washes, every minimum low wage job you can think of," he says.

He says his next stop is Miami. Click here to follow him on his journey.


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