Rich Holcomb is a recovering drug addict who began a career in HIV prevention in November of 2007. Growing up Richard lived in an abusive home, he also experienced child sexual abuse at the hands of a family member, both of these ongoing incidents lead to a troubled life as a youth. By his early 20’s Rich found himself on the streets of Montreal Canada addicted to drugs and turning tricks as a male prostitute to support that addiction.
Finally finding sobriety Rich co-founded the non-profit organization Project Weber, which is an outreach program focused on providing male sex workers with condoms, needle exchanges, substance abuse referrals and HIV testing. Due to a lack of available data regarding male sex workers in the United States Rich helped to develop a 2010 survey that that would assess the needs of the male sex worker population.
During this survey Project Weber assessed the needs of 50 male sex workers living on the streets in Providence Rhode Island. The project says they have gleaned valuable data on male sex workers who work and live on the streets of Providence. The results of this work has generated interest from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
While he stills struggles with his addiction Rich continues to work diligently for the safety of those still working and living on the streets. Hustler of Providence is his story.