Hope for the homeless
Updated: Jul 29, 2021
Did you know... On any given night in Australia, 1 in 200 people are homeless. That's around 105,237 people with 17,845 of that are children. Statistics show that 56% are male and 44% are female. What does it mean to be homeless? Not all homeless people are living on the streets, some live-in cars, in emergency housing, on friends’ couches, in tents, in abandoned buildings etc. Not only does being homeless leave people without a "Home" it leaves them without safety, security, warmth, a place of own comfort, self-worth and hope. It means not knowing where you’re going to sleep tonight, if you will eat tonight, have a shower or access to a toilet. Why are people homeless? Most people’s first thoughts are because of drugs and alcohol when that’s not necessarily the case and is in fact only a small portion of the homeless community. People are homeless for various reasons, a lot of the time being out of there control, escaping from domestic violence or abuse, kicked out of home as a adolescence, loss of home, loss of job or income, depression or psychological distress. Whatever the reason being, is that a reason for us as a community to just walk past them on the street ignoring that another human being is in need? Definitely not! A rock and a hard place. Once someone is homeless or even in the beginning stages of financial hardship, you get stuck between a rock and a hard place. Picture this... Jacob has been struggling to make ends meet for months now as his shifts at work are cut back dramatically. He has been trying to get another job but just had no luck with employment shortage. He is short on rent every week and issued with a termination from his rental property. Jacob is kicked out of his home, he doesn’t have any friends or family to turn to so he is forced to live out of his car until a shelter is available, no one will rent to him because he has now been "blacklisted" (real estate will not accept his application due to bad rental history). Jacob gets fired from his job for poor performance due to lack of sleep, hygiene and stress from living in his car. Jacob doesn't know where to turn, he is depressed and feeling hopeless. His car gets repossessed because he can’t make the car payments...he is now living on the street. Jacob is now stuck in this life and all alone, where people avoid looking in his direction when they see him on the street as they stereotype him as a drunk, drugged or even violent. Australia, we are better than this! Let’s stand up, raise awareness and move this mountain together!