I don’t have much knowledge about the homeless. But I do want to talk about this, as most people are, I am sad when I see people struggling and want to help.
I sometimes can give change. This morning I went to the corner store to get cigarettes, it was pouring rain and cold. I saw an old man sheltered under a very narrow storefront roof, crumpled up in a fetal position he covered himself with odd clothing that he seemed to have got from a garbage container. I gave him change and a smile.
I listen, often it is hard to understand what troubled people mean and then I just smile.
Sometimes I don’t like their stories…One lady told me about how she used to be rich and had everything she wanted. She started doing cocaine all the time… then her rich husband found a younger woman and dumped her. She never worked and never had to worry about finances. After her divorce, she quickly became sick and was unable to work… I suppose she did not have a chance to get alimony…
A man in his fifties approached me to ask if he could do some yard work or something to help. He said he is too old to sleep outside in the cold. He needed $40 to sleep in a shelter, that price is outrageously expensive, shelters should be free. Although I work I had no means to help him. I thought of inviting him to sleep in my home, but then I realized that even if he was a nice man, this may bring me trouble. I do not know if he has enemies or if he will tell others that or not so nice. We may also become friends and I would feel sad and try to help him. I can barely make my own ends meet.
The other day I was listening to a man living on the streets that was explaining how he can not get wellfare because he has no address and he can not get a job because he has no telephone or other means of being contacted.
I like the following CBC report that suggests more gouvernment help and support would cost less to tax payers. I especially like the idea that we can do more to help….homeless does not have to be hopeless!