I have to admit, this post was inspired by today’s daily prompt.
How many times have you passed a homeless person on the streets, and perhaps crossed the street so you wouldn’t have to bump into him/her, or because you couldn’t be bothered opening your purse or wallet to lend them a few bucks? They’re only going to turn around and buy booze with it, right? So justify it by saying you aren’t going to enable such a habit. Now, reverse roles. YOU’RE the homeless person. How would you want or expect people to treat you? Like you had the plague?! I can almost guarantee that every homeless person walking around this once beautiful earth not once, ever imagined themselves being without a roof over their head. Maybe they have made a series of poor decisions that lead them to where they are. Maybe they are Veterans with no job to come home to. Maybe they are JUST LIKE you and me, but no one ever stops to ask. Why? Are we afraid that if we devote any time to these individuals their homelessness might rub off? Are we afraid they’ve got a weapon and might harm us? Well, if I’m homeless, and a complete stranger offers me money or a free meal, the last thing I’m going to do is shoot them or harm them in any way. Take a look around at all that you’ve got. Do you have extra furniture that you aren’t using? Perhaps this homeless person would LOVE to have it. Do you know of any job openings that might get the ball rolling to get them back on their feet?
I’ve hit rock bottom. I know what it feels like. Fortunately for me, I had one hell of a support team, ready and waiting to get me back on steady ground. Perhaps these people don’t have a support system at all. So, again, if you can’t spare a few dollars, or have the decency to buy them a meal (so they don’t drink away the money), just sit and talk to them. They are human beings!! The feelings you and I have? They have them too. Do you think they enjoy being ignored? Do you think they feel good about their current circumstances? Do you think having a friend might do wonders for them?
My mom and I have this discussion often. If we were ever to win the lottery, we would build a HUGE hotel, and allow these homeless individuals to stay free of charge, providing 3 meals a day, a roof over their heads and a means to help them get back on their feet. Sometimes… most times… that’s all they need. Just a chance. And if we could offer them that chance, we would be more than happy to do so.
I also realize that many homeless individuals have resorted to drug addiction and alcohol abuse to help them cope. So, we would also get them rehabilitated, so that they were in the right frame of mind to hold down a job. Possibly find a social worker, willing to volunteer his or her time to help in our attempts.
I’m so tired of hearing all this talk on the evening news of cleaning up our cities. Well, how about we focus on those that would jump at such an opportunity?! Instead of labeling them all an eyesore… THAT disgusts me. EVERYONE has a story; EVERYONE makes mistakes; EVERYONE is entitled to a second chance. I know that the relapse rate is astronomical, but perhaps if the right circumstances came along, and people were willing to follow through with their attempts to help, instead of only going so far, we COULD help these individuals.
Just a thought…
Happy blogging everyone!
~Kate… one determined to make a difference in at least one persons life…Kate.