Homeless


I love my bed.  I can’t wait to sink into it at nights and lay my head on my lovely plush pillows and cover myself in my warm, soft quilt. 

Tucked up in bed these last few nights, those huge gales have woken me and I’ve found myself lying there listening to the rain splattering against the window and the wind buffeting against the house.  It’s been quite scary at times.  I thought about the damage it might be causing and I thought about anyone who might be out in such terrible conditions. 

Then it got me thinking about the homeless….those people who are out in this dreadful weather.  Made me feel totally dismayed.

homelss.jpg  We can be judgemental about the homeless and say that no-one needs to be that way…that’s it’s their own fault.  But these are largely myths and it’s not always your stereotypical drunken vagrant or the typical drug addict that make up the homeless statistics although we have no right to condemn even these type of homeless people.  But anyway, most homeless people are victims and it’s actually quite easy to suddenly find yourself homeless. Unexpected circumstances occur all the time. 

I’ve been looking up some of the causes of homelessness:

the breakup of a relationship
young people fleeing from abuse
loss of employment leading to home repossession/eviction
fire and lack of insurance
ex-service members
asylum seekers/refugees

and to a lesser degree:

drug and alcohol addiction
mental health problems

Not all homeless people sleep on the streets.  Some are inadequately sheltered  or sleeping rough on someones floor.  Many people, some with children, are passed from hostel to hostel.  Some drift from b&B to B&B, unable to get themselves onto the system to become eligible for housing.

I find it utterly amazing that families can be homeless or in temporary and very poor accommodation in this century of technological progress and advancement.  I find it even more amazing that families can be homeless in the richest countries of the world.

sleeping-rough.jpg  But the recent bad weather made me think more about the people who are sleeping rough on the streets, in shop doorways under cardboard blankets.

If you do happen to meet a homeless person, speak to them respectfully, take them some warm food, a drink and perhaps even a blanket if possible.  And some practical help such as written information of places where they could stay for the night.

And…
thank your lucky stars for your warm and cosy bed,
and that roof over your head.

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6 responses to this post.

  1. When I got to the US I was horrified at the number of homless people. Back in Brisbane I only ever saw one he wsas polite and never once asked for money. Hereevery step you take someone is asking you for money, not for food for money. I saw a young girl trying to give a homeless man a small McDonalds meal she bought for him,he just sat there and abused her (I felt sorry for she only tried to help). It makes me sad when I walk down the street and seem them walking with all there possesions, cold and tired. The hardest thing is how do we help not tmeporary help but lasting help, can we make a difference somehow?

    Reply

  2. Posted by misslionheart on January 20, 2007 at 10:25 pm

    I’m in a quandry about some of the beggars on the street. Here’s an experience I had a few years ago on the High Street in a Yorkshire town.

    A man aged about 20-25 was begging with the usual ‘Cold, homeless and hungry’ piece of tatty cardboard, sitting in a doorway with a cute pup by his side. I gave him all the change I could spare before I counted 90p for a cup of coffee I would be having, while I waited for my husband to meet me.

    After a few minutes, the man came into the cafe and met up with a few of his friends. He didn’t order anything, just sat down and brought out a pair of brand new Nike trainers from a box. He bragged that he’d only been out a couple of hours, and “Look what I’ve got!”

    So please don’t assume that all the beggars are genuine. Give them a sandwich, a cup of coffee, a pie…

    Reply

  3. Yes, you’re right. I try never to assume anything. That’s why I don’t assume they’re bad either. That would be judgemental.

    And I would never give them money either. Like I said…offer them food and practical help.

    Pocket, shame on the guy who abused the young girl trying to help.

    Reply

  4. This organisation (based in New York) is inspiring;

    http://www.commonground.org/

    🙂

    Reply

  5. Thanks Matt. That’s an excellent movement.

    “Make Homelessness History” Yeah, why not?

    Reply

  6. ‘Every little helps’ ( 😉 )

    Reply

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