Homeless

Homelessness has many layers from those literally sleeping on the streets who can get hot meals from some charitable groups and sometimes showers and clothes washed by mobile services. But these are twice a week if they live in busy regional areas, less in rural regions and more frequently in city centres.

Some have access to shelters, shared accommodation where people with addictions and mental health issues can be quite intimidating. There are also day centres available where they can shower, store a few basic possessions that they seldom return to collect, have a meal, cuppa and play cards or board games. But these are sincerely disenfranchised people whose ranks are swelling rapidly as the wealth gap widens.

Caused by high rents and cost of living with lousy wages and even much lower benefits. People tend to ignore them, put them down, dismiss them coz they are an embarrassment. Everyone wants to think they are no hopers, people who don’t want to work, who …. [fill in the blanks] And with this attitude everyone loses out! Yet there are no guarantees we wont be one tomorrow or next year …

Another layer are those who camp in doubtful vans or cars who tend to use public conveniences at parks. Some of these still attend work and shower at the gym. Their wages didn’t keep up with the cost of living and they tell no one. This is often where families end up, trying to stay together at any cost but not having sufficient to live in a home.

Then there are those who have a better network of friends who couch surf or become servants for the sick or elderly in order to get a bed and be fed. But all these people are homeless, bereft of choices to live in the location and situation that they would like to call home. Home must be in their heart and their worldly possessions are limited even if they can afford some storage or leave a few boxes in a friend’s garage.

They are victims of circumstances … lack of funds, addiction or health issues, maybe expats or ex military … everyone has a story and history that make them fascinating to talk to if you only take the time. So next time you see a homeless person give them some time, buy them a coffee or sandwich or better still volunteer on the food van or laundry truck in order to meet these marginalised people and get a glimpse of their world. I have volunteered at various aspects of this spectrum …

 

Consider this week the notion of being homeless. Most of us are fortunate to have a roof over our heads. Be it in a cold climate or warm one, living without shelter is a daunting proposition for anyone. You could explore the day in the life of a homeless person. Your thoughts on having to live rough. Is it any different between males and females and or children.

15 comments

  1. My son and I were homeless after we lost our house . . we slept in the car, interesting apartment situations, spent a summer on a dysfunctional sailboat. . I do wonder if we’ll always live out of storage totes . .
    But I am so so very grateful for this interesting apartment and for how soft my pillow is!!!
    And we are still together ❤

    Liked by 2 people

      • Being together is the most important.. . the car was actually a fun adventure and I wouldn’t mind a full-time situation in a small RV . . we would enjoy that also . . being flexible to whatever comes is key . . and remembering to be grateful for all God provides.
        btw~ while we were homeless we were able to meet homeless teens we never would have been blessed to talk to, so God used our situation for His good. We prayed with them and gave them a Book of John . .
        Those are things that really matter.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Our area takes a lot of donations for our homeless. I even had my daughter donate Girl Scout cookies to a homeless shelter to teach her about the homeless. We also gave a man’s brand new winter coat and the gentleman gave her a hug. It left a lasting impression because now she’s a nurse and continues to help people!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is a beautiful, caring, important post, Kate! Thank you for writing and sharing it!
    I have worked with homeless people in two different states in the USA. We were able to help them a lot…but, you know what? I found they gave more to me than I gave to them. Their stories, their appreciation, etc. And they taught me a lot.

    Where I live now we do several things, but the main one is to buy food products and put together bags with 2 meals worth of a variety of food in the bag…Plug plastic silverware, water, a pretty napkin and note of caring. We keep the bags in our cars and when we see homeless people on the sides of the highways or streets we stop and give them a bag or two. All of them accept the food and many have cried out of gratefulness.

    (((HUGS))) 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Please do!
      We fill the big ziplock bags with food and a bottle of water…like fruit cups, canned entrees, fruit (like a banana or orange, etc.), granola bars, vienna sausages, etc., and keep a box of bags in our cars to hand out. It works well.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This is really an advocacy close to my heart kate…i wish i could put up a shelter for the homeless here..but since we can’t still afford my family and i opens our home for one day every December to some homeless children..its a day of fun, games and food..then we have some grocery packs when they left..we have been doing that fo almost 15 years now..every year we cater to a least 50 homeless family in our house for a day..

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It leaves them vulnerable, and many are abused, or at best, treated badly. It is difficult to shift attitudes in some sectors, but in the main I find there are willing journey friends who help and conribute to any of the processes to meet the need of teh homelees/street people. Great piece.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thankfully, there are couple of organizations in Karachi who provide shelter, food to the homeless. Some of them even arrange jobs for them, which is very good.
    Very inspiring this post is, Kate 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ve been there. I got thrown out of home two weeks after my mum died at 16 years old. I slept on a park bench for two days.
    After I escaped with my boys from a violent and abusive marriage, we lived in a camper van for a while, until we were lucky enough to find the place we live now.
    I am so grateful for that. I knit scarves to help keep homeless people warm and I also try and put together hygiene packs with sanitary towels and ibuprofen in for homeless women too. Helping the homeless is something we can all do.x

    Liked by 3 people

    • wow raven wing you have done it tough in many ways, that is what makes you so sweet and sensitive! Yes I visit shelters, do the feeding when I’m in the city, talk to them at the laundry trucks… anything is a help!

      Liked by 1 person

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