Although the government would like us all to imagine that the economy is doing well and thriving, there is another side to it that is hardly spoken about much. In the UK today, we have over 280,000 people being rendered homeless each year. At any one given time, over 50,000 souls are being housed by charities and other well wishers. For most of us, we are so used to our comfy lives in our heated homes, warm meals, showers, and all the other trappings that we can afford. But being a homeless person is the worst form of humiliation for any human being. It is a shameful, degrading situation that should touch our hearts in most special way and spur us to action.
- Not all of the people that are homeless in the UK today went there by choice, or were irresponsible in life, used drugs, to end up in such. Today, we are seeing more and more young women ending up in the streets, as they try to escape abusive relationships. There have been instances of hitherto productive and successful women finding shelter in streets with their children; most are running away from men who are as irresponsible as they are abusive.
- And even for the few that made blunders in life like doing drugs, abusing alcohol; who are we to judge? There is always more to it than meets the eye; often, it is about a young person that is looking for love and acceptance in a turmoil filled family, it is about a girl that was abused by her father when young, and is thus trying to soak herself in alcohol to forget everything. No matter the case, these people require more love and guidance than condemnation.
- The dangers of living on the street are numerous, and our homeless are some of the most vulnerable people in society today. Each year, dozens of homeless people are assaulted, raped, mugged, and plainly treated in very inhumane ways. Recently, there has been controversy here in the UK over an international food chain that was said to refuse to serve homeless people or even anyone that looked like they ‘were from the streets’. A gardener dressed in his overalls was turned away because the staff confused him for a homeless person. Can it get worse than that?
- Regardless of our status in life, race, religion, we all have a responsibility towards humanity. These homeless people are no less human beings as you are. If you got admitted in hospital in critical condition, in desperate need of a blood transfusion, organ transfusion; your closest family members, children, spouse, can fail to pass the eligibility test. But a homeless person, if found eligible by the doctors to donate such, would do so, and you’d live! In other words, we are all humans, equal; just that life has dealt them a heavy blow and thrust them right in the streets.
- The best way for you and I to help transform the lives of these homeless guys is to partner with Home Charities, and other Shelters that help the homeless. Considering that a huge number of the homeless in the UK today are young, this is an issue that we need to address very urgently. And at times, you don’t have to rely on sending money and other material assistance to a Shelter for the homeless. Try to talk to the homeless themselves, find time to sit down with them somewhere in a Park, hear them, try to understand them, inspire if you can. More often than not, these people pull out of such predicaments if they are guided and assisted to be back on their feet.