Ivanka Trump met with a homeless Washington, D.C. woman and her mother while they were at the DC Dream Center, which aims to inspire youth and adults "to dare to dream, equipping them to reach their God-given potential."
In a powerful story, Washington Post columnist Theresa Vargas spoke to Kiesha Davis, who can't help but feel she was used by the first daughter and Trump's White House.
“My mother and I, we’ve been homeless,” Davis explained. “We’ve been sleeping out of a vehicle. But I’m a community advocate, and so, yes, it has been depressing and debilitating, but I’m so grateful and thankful for Ivanka, coming here with everyone today to partner with DC Dream Center. That has been awesome to get food out into the community. They’ve allowed me to come and pick up food to be able to deliver to people that are shut-in, that are needy, that are homeless and disabled, you name it.”
Trump was there to help distribute food as part of the Agriculture Department’s Farmers to Families Food Box Program. Davis was there to help too and get some much-needed groceries. Despite being homeless, she's still giving back.
Davis recalled "just beaming" when the first daughter spelled her name correctly on Twitter when she retweeted her thanks.
“It was great to meet you Kiesha!” Trump tweeted.
It was great to meet you Kiesha! https://t.co/fiRR7yq3ue— Ivanka Trump (@Ivanka Trump)1595270846.0
Some commentators were supportive of Trump's support while others told Davis she was just a pawn in the Trump PR game.
“This is too sad to watch. She doesn’t see that Ivanka only used her for a photo op," said one reply.
Davis ignored it, thinking positively about their interaction and remembering how "genuine" Ivanka seemed.
It's been more than a month. Davis and her mother are still homeless and they haven't heard a word from the first daughter. So, Davis tried calling.
“There was hope in the moment, and then after that, it was like, ‘Okay, I’ve been through this before,’ ” Davis told the Post. “I’m used to people blowing me off.”
What happened to Davis was the perfect example of what not to do, columnist Vargas explained. "People who wield political power shouldn’t put vulnerable people on public display without offering ways to improve their situations."
She recalled the first time she met Davis, after she and her mother were wrongfully evicted for standing up to their landlord. Davis was scared that her mother was going to die before they could find another place to live.
"Many Black people can’t march for justice. They’re too busy trying to survive the lack of it," wrote Vargas.
Davis' GoFundMe page has given her enough money to rent a car she's hoping that they can live in until they find a place to live. She said she's nervous about going to stay in a shelter during the pandemic given her mother's health.
“I don’t want to cry,” she told Vargas. “But I get so irritated. Emotionally, I’m just drained because I worry about my mom more than anything. If it was just me, I would be okay. But I just get so mad, because how did this happen? How did this even happen? What more can I be doing?”