Thank you so much for your interest in this incredibly relevant and unique course! This DeCal is inspired by the nonprofit organization Invisible People (https://invisiblepeople.tv/stories/), which is founded by Mark Horvath and is dedicated to educating the public about homelessness through innovative storytelling, news, and advocacy; dispeling harmful myths and stigma that have been normalized in our society; and sharing the incredible stories of real people who have experienced or are currently experiencing homelessness. If you want to learn more about the international organization, feel free to check out the incredibly raw and insightful interviews that Mark has conducted with unhoused individuals around the world (https://www.youtube.com/user/invisiblepeopletv), as well as the numerous TedTalks he has given throughout the years. If you become part of our community, you will actually be able to meet Mark towards the end of the semester when he comes in for a special talk!
The goal of this DeCal is to offer a comprehensive, engaging, and stimulating environment for UC Berkeley students to deepen their understanding of homelessness and those who are unhoused. As students of UC Berkeley, we are all exposed to the undeniable issue of homelessness in our community. Every day, students intentionally walk around unhoused individuals, making every possible action to avoid them and ignore their existence. This is the harsh outcome of the social stigmas and misconceptions that we have been taught about homelessness, which has consequently made unhoused individuals feel invisible, isolated, and unimportant in society. This is why through this DeCal, we aim to tackle these misconceptions and stigmas by developing a deeper understanding of both the broader issue of homelessness and the unhoused who are a part of our community at Berkeley. We also aim to explore various areas of the unhoused population to shed light in our society’s “invisible people”.
If you are interested in being a conversation-changer on the incredibly misunderstood issue of homelessness, joining our community of like-minded individuals, and making real change to the lives of the unhoused, this DeCal is perfect for you!
Key Learning Objectives:
1. Students will be able to develop a deeper understanding of homelessness by engaging in various case studies of those experiencing food and shelter insecurity.
2. Students will develop personal connections to the topics studied through interactive activities and discussions throughout class.
3. Students will be able to identify stereotypes and dispel myths about homelessness and unhoused individuals after exploring personal biases regarding homelessness.
4. Students will be able to engage and speak freely in important discussions as a part of an open and judgement-free community.
5. Students will be able to take part in projects and efforts to make the unhoused population in our community feel visible and cared for.
6. Students will learn about important efforts and legislations that attempt to address homelessness in America.
7. Students will be able to refine their perceptions of “homelessness” through a multidisciplinary lens.
The class will be graded on a P/NP basis and you will only need 70 points to pass the class. In addition, there will be no midterm or final, but just fun and engaging projects! The class is out of a total of 100 points, which are broken down as follows:
20 points for assignments
20 points for midterm project
20 points for final project
20 points for attendance and participation
20 points for activities credit
No day(s) left until application deadline!