This High-Tech Homeless Was a Web Designer
This is another amazing story from homeless. This homeless doesn’t have a musical talent like Donald Gould, the homeless man who playing piano and shows his amazing talent, but this Detroit homeless have another skill in digital industry. Abe Hagenston, a 42-year-old man is the first high-tech homeless ever. While other homeless mostly a panhandling on the street and get help from stranger who passes by, Abe do it differently using his skill. Abe the high-tech homeless accepts credit cards on the 8 Mile highway overpass where he lives and created a website where he can be hired to work odd jobs.
Having a technological background (Abe was a web designer) he created and updates his own website “Honest Abe” from the public library. Has been a homeless for about a decade, Abe claims to be the first person on the streets outfitted with a card reader on his cellphone for donations. Abe got the phone – nicknamed the Obamaphone – which was provided by the US government’s Lifeline Assistance program, Telegraph reported.
The high-tech homeless accepts Visa, MasterCard, and American Express through Square.com, a credit card reader that connects to cell phones — although he said his phone has been stolen before, NBC News reported. Thanks to Pastor Bob and the First United Methodist Church for their generosity giving Abe a new phone. Abe told CBS Detroit:
“I’m the only homeless guy in America who can take a credit card. It’s all done safely and securely through square.com,”
He uses the website to seeking further donations and also offer his services to carry out odd jobs from painting, computer work, to clearing snow. Abe says his website has already helped him to land some work, and it’s benefiting other homeless people, too. When he got a job from his website, and need a couple extra guys to carry some things, he will invite another homeless to help him. Or if he is unable to do the work, he knows other homeless people who are willing to do so.
“People don’t realize how tough it is to come from nothing when you don’t have any family or any friends,”
“I’m trying to turn this situation into something that will not only help me, but help others. I’d like to see America start granting homeless people a real shot.”
The high-tech homeless said his dream is to create an app that would identify fake panhandlers — and to run a non-profit for the homeless.
“There are 300 million people in the US. I only need 1 million people to give me a dollar each and then I am done. Other people get rich off the web, help me to be the first homeless dude to do it and I will help the next.”
Abe says he brings in about $20 to $50 a day from the kindness of strangers who drive by the highway overpass where he sleeps and give him a tip in change or with the swipe of a card using the Square reader. Now, the high-tech homeless stated that “My business is being homeless, now homeless is my business”. Like all true professionals, Abe Hagenston also has a LinkedIn account.