Ways to Help the Homeless
Not all of us were born privileged. While some may be born with silver spoons in their mouth, there are some who live paycheck-per-paycheck or worse, who barely have enough resources in order to survive. Resources are things such as money, food, water, and electricity to name a few. Lack or non-existence of such resources lead to unpleasant things such as hunger, famine, homelessness, and the worst case is death.
Situations like these are harsh but yes, they exist. While they may totally be controllable, some people may be unfortunate to slip into the abyss of darkness and may have a hard time getting back up. But humans are known to be passionate creatures and we can do a lot of things to help. Let us focus on helping the homeless people as an example.
The government surely has a lot going on for the homeless folks. What you could do is to help in promoting homelessness prevention programs. Some of the homeless people may not be well-informed that such programs exist. What you could do is to direct these homeless people to the authorities or organizations who could help them apply for aid.
The different states may supply aid for the homeless but some states may not be so proactive in such endeavors. In case you are in one, urge your government to push state welfare with particular focus to the homeless. What you can do is to keep in touch with your government representatives. A personal visit is the best method to be heard followed by a letter and lastly, a phone call.
You may also want to try contacting corporations. Some corporations have teamed up with groups whose advocacies are for the benefit of the homeless. What usually happens is that big time corporations offer low-cost housing in cooperation with the state and federal government. Their aim is usually not for profit but to help build communities. This is now happening in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Cleveland, and Chicago.
If you are in a powerful position in the residential community you are in, you might want to push for a transitional housing program. It’s pretty simple. If you have neighbors who are in the verge of being homeless, you could help them extend their stay in their current home while helping them find a cheaper house to move on. Perhaps you could also refer them to agencies or social service arms who could assist them in their plight. They could arrange for the next place they would dwell on and even help them with the funding they need for rent, mortgage, and necessary utilities.
You may also choose to volunteer with the Habitat for Humanity. As you may know, they are a Christian ministry dedicated to building houses for the homeless and soon to be homeless. As a volunteer, you could have the experience of building the houses from scratch. Funds of the ministry often come from donations by individuals, foundations, corporations, and of course, churches.
Another way to help is to hire these homeless people in case you have a business. Do not hesitate to hire them because they, too, could have potential. Most industries who hire the homeless are maintenance, security, clerical, and construction.
You may also opt to visit shelters for the homeless and play with the children there. Oftentimes, these kids are used to being transferred every now and then and they do not receive any formal schooling. Take these children to informative trips if you can. Let them see museums and zoos at the very most. You could also tutor these children if you have free time. At the very least, you may also play with these children and educate them with simple lessons or you may bring over your children to play with them. Facilitate activities such as coloring or playing with toys such as cars and dolls. Not only you would bring joy to the lives of these children, but your children could also benefit in the interaction. In an early age, it is important that your children already know that being homeless do not make people any less of a person. Ask your children to keep all the stuff they do not want anymore such as toys, clothes, and books, then donate them and explain the good cause of such.
Help organize a drive for the donations needed by organizations aiding the homeless. Once you have compiled these, put also the complete details of the organizations’ addresses, phone numbers, and contact persons. Send out your list to other organizations that do charity work such as religious centers and even the Boy and Girl Scouts. You could also help publish shelter information by contacting local newspapers, churches, and civic groups (for their newsletters). For a more personal touch, you could also involve yourself in food or clothing drives. After which, put drop-off containers in your local groceries or clothing stores where people can give donations. Also, do not forget to publicize your project by putting up announcements in the papers, online, and even through bulletin boards.
Another thing you could do is to help organize fund-raising events in your school, company, or neighborhood. Conduct raffles and donate the proceeds to organizations that help the homeless. You can also pool funds within yourselves and ask your company to match those funds then donate it to your preferred charitable organization.
Inform the people you know, or even those you do not know, of the situation of the homeless. Being an enthusiast in helping the homeless also entails paying the good deed forward. For example, you may submit articles to your local newspaper and explain why helping the homeless is an awesome thing to do. Or you may set up a blog dedicated to your endeavor of helping the homeless and spread it all over social media.
There are a lot of ways to show our help towards our less fortunate fellowmen. All we need to have is time, willingness, and a good heart. Be the difference you want to see in this world now and start with yourself.
Christmas has come and gone. What have you done to help the homeless?