At the beginning of this year, Bejuique "Bay" Shambow and Bobby Austin were sleeping in a tent along the Santa Ana riverbed in Orange County. Then, in February, they and hundreds of their fellow campers were kicked out of the encampment by OC officials and given temporary shelter.
Since then, the couple has been working hard to pull themselves up and out of homelessness. They've had treatment for substance abuse and mental health issues, and learned a trade.
It's been a long road. And it's still a struggle.
"It looks really bad on paper for us," Shambow said. "We could look like probably monsters out there. But that's not who we are. And when you're trying to climb back into society, they don't look at who you are, they look at what they can see on paper."
Read more of Bay and Bobby's story on LAist: This OC Couple Is Clawing Their Way Out Of Homelessness, And Texting Us Along The Way