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Focussing directly on actual experiences of homeless people, this important book provides guidance to everyone involved in working in the homeless sector, and helps turn insight into quality services. It shows how categorising homeless people into various stereotypes, and making assumptions about their lives, mis-shapes their identities, and mis-shapes the services that we provide, so significantly that it even impacts on workers' own senses of themselves. And it shows how focusing on individuals' realities - how they cope with their environments, and make sense of their experiences - helps us work together effectively to provide appropriate support. Homeless and ex-homeless people, leading academics and practitioners, describe experiences of going through various homeless 'systems'; sometimes many times. They show how these experiences, alongside other powerful forces, affect not only homeless people, but also homeless workers. Reading about how, as individuals, they contest and negotiate the identities that are thereby superimposed, lets us learn from the lives of rough sleepers, people who have multiple needs, the refugee experience, denial of sexual identity, love on the streets, challenging behaviour, homeless sector culture, and the labelling of 'difficult people' and 'unresponsive services'.