Emergency thermal bivvy bag
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A car cover is important if you are homelss
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Solid fuel cubes
How to keep clean if you're homeless...
There is a smell to being homeless and it's something you must
avoid. Staying clean is important not only to blend in with
society, but also for your health. Homeless people may succumb
to fungal infections, rashes, sores, lice, yeast infections, and
problems with teeth.

Below are some strange items and ideas garnered from homeless
people that will help you stay clean:

  • Lubricant gel. Yes, the stuff intended for love making. You
    can get a dry shave from lubricant gel.

  • Zip lock bags. Shampoo or bar soap is a personal preference
    (one leaks and one gets soggy and slippery), either one is
    solved with ziplock bags.

  • Bathing suit. Have a bathing suit for the occasion when you
    find a hose.

  • Gym membership. Get a gym membership for a place to
    shower, stay healthy, and get out of the weather.

  • Wet wipes. Wet wipes are effective when a shower is not
    possible. You can also learn to make your own.

  • Solar shower and toilet. If you live in an inexpensive boat,
    you will need a portable toilet and a solar shower ~ both are
    absolutely essential and inexpensive. You can keep down the
    smell with kitty litter you find at the dollar stores. It works
    just as well for humans as it does for cats.

How to dress if you're homeless...
It almost goes without saying that you need to dress in layers
when you're homeless. The weather will have you. Dragging a
heavy jacket around in the summer could be cumbersome, but you
don't want to lose it come winter.

  • Considerations for women. Women who live on the street
    will want to dress in dark and baggy clothing to appear more
    like homeless men. A big concern for homeless women is
    sexual violence.

  • Dress lightly in the summer. You don't want to drag around
    a heavy coat in summer. Find a safe place for your
    possessions, such as your car or storage locker, so you can
    blend in with other people. You will want to bring a layer to
    wrap if you head indoors to the movies where the thermosat
    is set at chill. Cargo pants that zip can help you dress
    lightly. Remember also to dress in layers.

  • Wear sunscreen (even in winter). Another valuable lesson
    from the homeless is to wear sunscreen. It's an expensive
    purchase but well worth the investment. Sunscreen will help
    disguise your homelessness! Leathered skin is a tipoff that
    you're homeless and the goal is to blend in with society,
    which is another lesson below.

  • Keep work clothes separate. To prepare yourself for a job
    make sure you have three pairs of pants and three shirts to
    make it through a work week.

  • Socks and underwear. Socks are an important survival tool.
    If you're making care packages for the homeless, understand
    that clean socks are very important to them, yet hard to
    come by. People just don't think of donating socks to foster
    kids and homeless. Underwear is just too personal and
    virtually never gets donated with the rare exception of foster
    kids. One way to make underwear feel "fresh" if you're a girl
    or woman are the thin "in-between" menstrual pads. You can
    get an entire pack at the dollar store for a buck. This can
    make the chore of cleaning underwear easier for the
    homeless. Thermal underwear is another important clothing
    idea to keep yourself warm and is discussed further down in
    the article.

How to act if you're homeless...
It's important to act like you're not homeless and to blend with
society. If you carry your stuff with you then you will look
homeless. You don't want to broadcast that you're homeless
because you won't be allowed in stores, maybe even chased out
of them. You could be arrested for trespassing or vagrancy. They
may also just harass you.

It is also illegal to be homeless! How so? You can't loiter, you
must have identification, these are just some of the basic rules.

  • The art of blending in. Most homeless people prefer to go
    under the radar and to blend with society. Blending in is a
    key lesson in homelessness, mostly because attracting too
    much attention usually brings with it problems. It's the "gray
    man" concept of prepping. Lay low, stay out of trouble, look
    like the others, walk with the flow. In other words, leave no
    impression. Wearing muted colors can help (definitely not
    tactical gear). Don't make comments to others and don't
    start a fight.  Learn more about the gray man theory.

  • Loitering. Act like you're not homeless, because being
    homeless can be illegal. Think about this: you must sleep
    and yet it is illegal to sleep in public. There are curfew laws
    for parks and public spaces.

  • Why identification is important if you're homeless... One of
    the most important things you can do if you're about to be
    homeless is to gather your documents into a safe deposit
    box if possible. Be able to prove who you are! Some states
    make it an offense and can arrest you if you refuse to
    identify yourself to police. Make a copy of your identification.
    If you don't have a birth certificate, a driver's license, social
    security or some other form of identification, you will look
    like an illegal citizen. Unfortunately these forms of
    identification also require an address and they are inter-
    related ~ to get social security you need a birth certificate,
    to get a birth certificate you need a form of ID. Being a John
    or Jane Doe will put you on the run in avoiding the law.
    Avoid it by having a backup plan with regards to your
    identification. A Safe Deposit box is also a good place to
    store your checkbook, credit cards if you have any. It is fifty
    bucks well spent.

  • Pick a sad looking backpack (or hide it with a plastic bag).
    A survival lesson from the homeless is to downgrade the
    look of your backpack. A raggedy bag will make you fit in
    with the others. A quality backpack will become the target of
    theft within the homeless community. The better your gear
    looks, the more vulnerable you are. Covet your backpack and
    sleep with it attached to your body somehow, use it as a
    pillow or cuddle with it to help prevent other homeless from
    stealing your last possessions. You can also carry your
    backpack in a plastic bag to disguise your backpack and look
    less vulnerable.

How to cook food if you're homeless...
While the book at the top of the page shares "dumpster diving
tips" your food can be well orchestrated if you're a prepper and
you can avoid this altogether. Try to eat as healthy as possible,
but without breaking your teeth or your budget!

The Wise Foods Bugout Bag provides the basics for cooking and
more. The contents of this 72-hour kit includes:

  1. 1 Backpack
  2. 5 Water Pouches
  3. 42 Piece Bandage Kit
  4. 1 Squeeze Flashlight
  5. 5-in-1 Survival Whistle
  6. Water Proof Matches
  7. Mylar Blanket
  8. Emergency Poncho
  9. Playing Cards
  10. N95 Dust Mask Portable Stove
  11. Stainless Steel Cup
  12. Pocket Tissues
  13. Wet Naps, Waste Bag
  14. Wise Foods ~
    32 Servings of Wise Food-Southwest
    Beans and Rice (4 Serve)
    Creamy Pasta and Vege Rotini (4 Serve)
    Brown Sugar Multi Grain (4 Serve)
    Apple Cinnamon Cereal (4 Serve)
    Hearty Tortilla (4 Serve)
    Whey Milk (12 Serve)

What food to buy...
Foods that are portable include:
  • Food bars, including protein bars, breakfast bars, and cereal
    bars ~ they are loaded with sugar, but do a great job of
    satisfying a need. Skip the crunchy granola bars (just a
    precaution for bad teeth).
  • Applesauce
  • Ramen noodles ~ they are soft and easy on the teeth. Add
    them to canned soups for a hearty and easy meal that's
    more like a homeless casserole.
  • Tuna packs that don't require a can opener.
  • Vienna sausage and other canned foods with pop tops.
    These will provide you with the protein to keep hunger at
    bay.
  • Peanut butter and cheese and crackers are a top food.
  • Bottled water is something homeless relish.
  • Vitamins. You won't be getting much vitamins from your
    food, so you may as well ensure you get a bottle to keep up
    your health.

How to cook your food...
Before you become homeless, have some cooking system in place
a stainless steel mess kit and a method to cook, such as the
Estbit stove. The
Stanley Camp Cook set is around $12. As one
former homeless person wrote, "You can't buy bowls or forks with
an EBT card." An Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) is an electronic
system that allows state welfare departments to issue benefits
through a special kind of debit card that has restrictions. It is
essentially a food benefit card, previously known as food stamps.

  • Esbit stove. The Esbit stove and fuel tablets is a compact
    and efficient way to cook when you need it.

  • Hobo Stove / Canned heat. Coghlans Camp Heat, pictured
    right with the Coghlan's Folding Stove. This will help you for
    cooking or heating at camp; home or in emergencies. Each
    can burns for about 4 hours and the fumes are non-toxic and
    odorless. You can also get generic Camp Heat for about a
    dollar at the Dollar Stores in the summertime. When the
    heating unit is done, you can use the stove with twigs,
    though there are more efficient camp stoves that use
    biomass.

  • Bushbox Outdoor Pocket stove.  Very small and
    lightweight the BushBox Outdoor Stove, right, fits into any
    pocket! Comes with an ash pan for soil protection. Not only
    will this little stove fit into any pocket but it is multi-fuel,
    meaning you can use it with wood, organic matter, or fuels
    such as and Esbit. Reduce carbon footprint and fuel costs by
    using renewable resources like twigs, leaves, pinecones,
    wood shavings, feathers, cotton pads, and other organic
    matter. Wood pellets, charcoal, dried animal dung are also
    great, fast burning option.

How to stay warm if you're homeless...
Home sweet home could be just about anywhere if it weren't for
the cold weather.

If you sleep in your vehicle, the "
sun will enforce a wake up time"
declares the author of the Survival Guide to Homelessness as it
can get too hot.

  • Thermal underwear. In some parts of the country, thermal
    underwear is a life-saving necessity.

  • Heat Factory Emergency Warmer Pack. The Heat Factory
    Emergency Warmer kit, pictured right includes a pack of 12
    pairs of hand warmers, 6 large body warmers, 6 pairs of toe
    warmers, 1 Mylar blanket and 2 glow Sticks.

  • Zippo hand warmer. Take a little help for surviving a cold
    winter's hunt by using a Zippo hand warmer. This pocket-
    sized hand warmer is made with rugged and durable metal to
    handle the rigors of your trek. It provides flameless, odorless
    warmth so it won't give your positioning away. Once you're
    done, refill it using easy fill technology so you don't waste
    lighter fluid. Warmth and convenience are easy to come by
    with the Zippo 12 hour hand warmer.

How to stay cool if you're homeless...
There are many ways to stay cool if you're a prepper and
homeless people can stay cool.

  • Car covers. Car covers are absolutely essential if you are
    homeless because they help block the sun and keep your car
    cool. Park in the shade or somewhere that will cast a
    morning shadow or you will fry like an egg on the hot days.

  • Malls, movies and fast food. Take advantage of commercial
    opportunities. If you have cash, head inside to a fast food
    establishment, grocery store or mall and sit in the air
    conditioning. Look clean or bring your toiletries to clean up
    and solve two problems at the same time.

How to entertain yourself if you're homeless.
Find a way to fill your time. A laptop and a cell phone can be your
best friend if you are lucky enough to have them. A laptop can
help you pinpoint resources, like food banks and social security
offices. If you have a laptop, this can be a method for earning
money, too. You can also find shelter in a public library.

How to hide your stuff if you're homeless...
When you are homeless you must be aware of circumstance and
to protect what little possessions you may have on the street.

  • Storage units. In an extreme crisis situation, storage units
    will be a place of looting, but if the rest of the world isn't
    roaming the streets for the last of the man-made goods, and
    you can afford it, a storage unit can give you hope for
    returning to living under a roof. A storage unit, or a friend's
    home, can help you not look like you're homeless. At most
    you should carry a bag.

  • Lockers. In the movie Desperately Seeking Susan, played by
    Madonna, a bus station locker was integral in storage. If
    such a locker is available to you, then do what you can to
    secure one. Honestly, this option will likely not be possible
    for many, but it's entertaining to consider. You can obtain a
    locker with gym membership. You may need to check with
    your front desk associates about renting space in the locker
    room for periods longer than a day at a time.

How to handle yourself in shelters...
No prepper worth his or her weight in salt wants to live in a FEMA
camp, but should you find yourself in such a predicament or find
yourself homeless, it's important to remember the following.

  • Rules are rules. Homeless shelters will have plenty of rules
    (and you'll see plenty of exclamation marks emphasizing
    them). Be polite and follow shelter rules out of courtesy. It
    is a small price to pay for the comforts they can provide. Try
    not to think of these rules as infringements on your freedom,
    but as a reminder of being polite. Having good manners is
    having self respect.

  • Defend what's yours by not fighting. "There is a combat
    element to homelessness," says Mobile Homemaker, author
    of the Guide to Homelessness blog, "but the best way to win
    a fight is not to be in the fight." It's a blog well worth
    reading. This basic principal is the same as with preppers.

How to earn money if you're homeless...
If you can learn to manage your finances properly, you will never
be homeless. The
Prepper's Financial Guide, right can help. This
book teaches you the other half of disaster planning―how to
survive the economic turmoil that hits regions and nations after
the storm has passed. It also provides a practical guide to living
a life of financial independence so you can weather whatever
personal financial problems you may have.

Mobile Homemaker, owner of the
Survival Guide to Homelessness
says that "Holding down a job may require that you camouflage
your homelessness." You will be surprised at how many people
are homeless who work in fast food restaurants.

  • Hygiene. Homelessness requires you to keep a secret and
    possibly get some clothes dry cleaned and to keep clean to
    avoid the homeless odor. Review the blog's hygiene section.
    Hygiene is essential for getting a part time job whether it's
    at a fast food restaurant or a night club promoting events by
    distributing flyers. Look clean. Smell clean. A woman can
    head to the makeup counter and try the samples if she is
    creative enough. Otherwise the Dollar store can provide the
    inexpensive lipstick for the life under a roof look.

  • Recycling trash. Finding trash and recycling it is the most
    popular way homeless earn a little cash. If you're about to
    become homeless, get yourself some gloves to help. Even
    rubber gloves will save you from potential cuts and infections.

  • Addictions. Steer clear of alcohol, cigarettes, drugs or any
    other distractions as they will not only suck your money and
    your health, but your peace of mind. You are in control of
    your life when you stay in control of your addictions. Even
    coffee may be a luxury afforded at the shelters or occasional
    splurge to stay warm. You can't have a job with an addiction.
    They are like oil and water.

  • Have a gas can for your car. Why this? Having a gas can is
    immensely useful for earning money while you are homeless.
    With a gas can in hand and your vehicle parked strategically,
    you can look like an ordinary person who has run out of gas
    and get help from citizens (provided your car looks like it's
    loaded for travel and not for living). You will be more easily
    able to solicit funds from others. People may give you a few
    bucks for your gas can to make it to the next town or just
    supply you with your local needs. That's a tip garnered from
    a homeless man who lived in Los Angeles. Panhandeling is a
    way to earn money, but this is a way to disguise the begging.


Final thoughts on homelessness...

  • Lock picking. Would you pick locks to survive? A set of lock
    picks and the skills to use them will give you access to
    certain buildings and resources. In a world without rule of
    law you may need them. Today, homeless people are able to
    find places to squat because of these skills. Lock picking is a
    prepper skill.


  • Cash. How many paychecks are you away from
    homelessness? If you are a prepper, one of the best things
    you can do, aside from laying away all the preps is to set
    aside good, old-fashioned money. Stash cash for the little
    expenses that can add up to having an extra month's rent.
    When your stash grows you can get a safe deposit box to
    have the cash or get a firesafe. Even if all you can do is to
    set loose change into a coin jar, you will be surprised at how
    quickly the money adds up.

Could you survive the streets? The nights? The hunger? The cold?
Hopefully this guide to homelessness for preppers has given you
the ideas for you how you might survive if it ever happens.
Remember that resources are available if you are creative and you
should embrace your creativity to get them!

Happy endings...
Homelesness has the advantage of time and freedom from a boss
and the daily grind.

Home sweet home ~ it's where you lay your
bugout bag.

More prepping articles....

Prepare to live happily ever after with us at happypreppers.com - the emergency
preparedness Web site of prepping, survival,
homesteading, and self-reliance.
Homeless lessons
Survival lessons from the homeless

Home sweet home.
The semblance of a home for a homeless person is a scattering of
possessions, distributed food, access to public bathrooms, and
perhaps a post office box. If you're a prepper who may someday
find yourself homeless, home is where you hang your bugout bag.

Homelessness can be a sad place or it can be freedom. It's all
how you look at it, according to those who've experienced it. The
resources are available to you if you only know where to look.
Embrace them! This guide to homelessness for preppers is a
special look at how you might survive if it ever happens to you...

Homeless Lessons for Preppers
Homelessness doesn't happen overnight. It's a series of life
choices, circumstances and events that culminate. It's the
festering result of a past and a realization that requires new
actions. Preppers have much to learn from the homeless! There is
time to prepare both to avoid homelessness and to have a plan if
you ever become homeless.

Anna Nonnim, author of
How to Be Homeless, Thrive and Recover
(the homeless survival guide), right, says, "If you’re about to lose
the roof over your head and default on all your debts, then do
whatever it takes to buy some stuff that will really matter in the
near future and can save your life." She divulges in her book the
items that could make huge a difference.

What will you need in a homeless life? The book right is highly
rated to give you guidance. Below are other ideas and resources
to get you thinking...

How to be homeless if you have kids...
If you have children, do not despair! Know that anything is
possible. You can get a job and your kids can have a great
education. Others before you have done it. You have the right to
pursue your happiness. You need only personal grit and
determination.

  • Job. The movie, The Pursuit of Happyness, starring Will
    Smith, is the true story of a man working as an intern for no
    money gets evicted from his apartment and is forced to
    sleep on the streets, in homeless shelters and even behind
    the locked doors of a metro station bathroom with his son. It
    gives a glimpse of the trials and tribulations of homeless life
    when you have kids. The scene in the bathroom is something
    that will resonate with you. It's well worth a watch to give
    you inspiration.

  • Education. Anything is possible ~ even a Harvard education.
    In the movie, Homeless to Harvard, you will discover
    scholarships could be a ticket out of poverty. Liz Murray was
    raised in poverty by drug-addicted parents. Her prospects
    were dismal, yet she turned her life around by going back to
    high school. After earning her diploma in just two years,
    while still homeless, Liz won a New York Times scholarship
    for needy students, which enabled her to attend Harvard
    University. It's another true-life story to give you hope. Don't
    worry about the bad acting, the lessons are there if you can
    look beyond that aspect. Want a book to inspire you to get
    money for college? Read Confessions of a Scholarship Winner
    by Kristina Ellis. She wasn't homeless, but her family fell
    below poverty and was told at 18 she was on her own. She
    earned $500,000 for college so she wouldn't be homeless.

How to sleep if you're homeless...
You thought there was only one type of homeless person, but
there are essentially five kinds of homeless categorized by their
shelter types:

  • car, RV or boat. A vehicle provides a homeless person with
    options. A car resolves problems. It provides shelter from the
    cold with potential for heat, a place to sleep, a measure of
    security, storage and mobility. It also causes expenses and
    problems in terms of insurance, gas and where to park, and
    breakdowns, but these are far preferable to having no vehicle
    at all. If you have a car the most important accessory is
    having a car cover, which ultimately will help you hide as it
    also shelters you from the sun. A boat or RV is another off-
    grid shelter option treated much the same as homelessness
    by society. Your goal at all costs is to maintain a vehicle as
    it is the best option for homelessness.

  • motels and hostels. Renting a motel is an expensive way to
    suck your money quickly and yet this seems to be a popular
    option because you can get a shower and get some rest. The
    limit for a stay is often set at 15-days, lest you become a
    permanent resident with squatting rights!

  • tent. You can plan for a tent home for around $50. At the
    bottom of the page is the best selling tent for two by
    Coleman. A tent allows you some privacy, though it's not
    secure, it can keep you feeling secure or at least to have
    some privacy if you can find a tent city. With a tent you can
    assimilate with a homeless community, which has both
    positive and negative aspects. A tent will provide problems
    in terms of mobility and where to set up, but a tent city
    village can provide a path forward to transitional and
    affordable housing. To read how you can help the homeless,
    read Tent City Urbanism, right. These encampments can be
    dangerous and yet they can also be a place to get ideas and
    pool resources. Just beware of your possessions and follow
    the rules.

  • couch. A couch to sleep on at a family or friend's house is a
    last ditch effort to stay off the streets; however, you will
    eventually outstay your welcome and the ultimate price may
    be a feud. It might not even be your friend's fault ~ a
    landlord could come and evict you from the couch because
    you are not on the lease. Whatever the case, staying on a
    couch for a few weeks may afford you enough time to get a
    job if you can and get a car or a tent ready. In the
    meantime, bring your own clean bedding and a pillow, keep
    things tidy, express gratitude to your host and feed yourself
    to minimize the burden and extend your stay. When you
    leave, ask if you can use their address. You will need it to
    get a Post Office Box and a requirement is a street address.

  • shelter. In a way, the system is rigged so you can't both get
    a job for the day and have a place to sleep by night if you
    need to sleep in a shelter. You see, the homeless shelter
    may require you to check in for a cot by mid afternoon.
    That's how a day's work, may preclude you from a night's
    sleep. It's even worse if you have kids. You might not be
    able to sleep with your child. You may also get bed bugs and
    lice or illness such as Tuberculosis. If you have a dog, a
    shelter is not an option. In a shelter, make your backpack
    your pillow. Theft is commonplace there.

  • street home. When you've exhausted the options above, the
    street is your home. You again may have the opportunity to
    temporarily live in a shelter, but you will be kicked out in the
    afternoon and you won't be guaranteed a stay the next
    night. It's just how it is. This is when a bivvy bag is an
    important thing to own. It can keep you warm on the streets
    at night and provide another layer of comfort between the
    cardboard and concrete. The emergency thermal bivvy bag,
    right, is a tear-resistant, reusable, bag. It's made of a heavy-
    duty aluminized PE interior material, and comes with
    drawstring carrying bag for convenience. A bivvy bag and
    cardboard is your friend if you live on the street.

    A street home can be any number or combination of the
    following:
  • Abandoned building
  • Bus station
  • Freeway overhang
  • Rooftop
  • Utility shed

    If you live on the streets, you may need to sleep by day as
    the nights could become too dangerous, particularly if you're
    a woman.

Of all the options above on where to sleep, we recommend living
in your car. Below Eileah Ohning shares her tips (it also proves
you can be homeless and have a job ~ she's a freelance
photographer and didn't want to waste $1000 a month rent, when
she could save it to buy a place of her own):
Stanley cook set
Solar shower
Luggalbe loo
Wise Foods Bugout Bag
Prepper's Financial Guide
Ten nuke supplies to own ~ supplies necessary to survive nuclear fallout
Best selling bump keys
Lock picking guide