Tag Archives: homeless blogs

Health and Homelessness

This is a story about a doctor who is doing a lot for the homeless in Boston (the story is in an interesting paper too… Street Roots on Word Press):

http://news.streetroots.org/2010/03/23/health-and-homelessness-front-lines-wdr-jim-oconnell

A study in Britain states that homelessness shortens a persons lifespan by 30 years:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/behindtheheadlines/news/2011-12-21-homeless-people-die-30-years-yonger-than-average/

Of course, this statistic depends greatly on the lifestyle of the homeless person, access to medical care and other resources. One study that I am looking for actually compares homelessness to cancer and states that being homeless shortens the lifespan the same way cancer does. So, I can surmise that individuals and agencies that look the other way and do not assist the homeless when they are trying to leave the streets are like doctors who ignore signs of cancer in a patient. The outcome is the same.


Getting the Message Out and Finding Answers to Homelessness

Found this blog with an interesting plan about how to get the message out about living on the streets:

http://streetroots.wordpress.com/2012/12/08/spend-24-hours-on-the-streets-with-street-roots-sr24/

I’ve been reading these many different blogs while doing research these past few months and have realised there are many things that my ‘hometown’ can do to recognise the root problems of homelessness in our community and create pathways for change.

One of the great things that other communities are doing to raise awareness is inviting citizens to sleep rough for one night, just to give them a taste of what homelessness is like. I think this helps to give people empathy for those with out a bed, four walls and privacy. Some groups take this a step forward and have gotten donations when participants get sponsored. A certain amount each night is pledged and given to charity. Great idea. When the community gets involved to bring awareness to the problems that homeless people face, it show that it cares.

In some communities, they are taking the sleeping rough for a good cause theme to greater heights. Local celebrities get involved and have gone a bit scruffy to wander the streets, just to spring their identity on those who would treat them unkindly. Ha. Gives the mean people something to think about.

One more thing that has come to my attention is the churches that are housing the homeless. The gym, which would go otherwise unused, is being opened to homeless people at night to help them get out of the cold. It would help so many people if churches and organizations would become involved by offering empty buildings, open land and vacant parking lots to those who are homeless. Just having a warm place to rest, and perhaps a sandwich, would save so many people from making decisions that could lead them down the wrong path.

The push to recognize small home communities as an option for people who can not afford ‘traditional housing’ would also help the homeless and those in poverty. Okay, I know. Building low-income apartments should solve the housing problem, but all too often the need for units out paces the supply. A small home community would only require a vacant piece of land (with basic water, sewage and electricity) and those who are able would build their own houses or have them built at a minimal cost. Small houses that they can afford. And it would cost the government so much less.

In places where small homes are not an option, like cities, there could be a system in place where people in the shelters can get help finding and establishing a shared housing situation. Properties that need fixing up could be rented to 3 or 4 people at a low rate in exchange for unskilled labor to do some of the work. Charities could donate housewares and furnishings, and the government would take some of the fear out of renting with relative strangers (who may not pay their rent) by guaranteeing that the rent will be covered if any short fall should arise. Of course, the delinquent renter would have to vacate (and reenter the shelter) and a new tenant (from the shelter) would be moved in to replace them. I know, this idea takes a lot of management, but it will save money in the long run and get people out of shelters in a much more orderly and secure way.

Just a few ideas. I’m sure there are many more.


First Night of Homelessness

This is quite a story, walking more than eleven miles and finally finding a safe place to sleep… then the sprinklers go on…

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mark-horvath/my-first-night-homeless_b_850145.html

Damn those night time sprinklers!

 


The Homeless Artist – An Unexpected Teacher

Here is a beautiful post:

The Homeless Artist – An Unexpected Teacher.


Some New Projects in the Works

BuddyPress default theme

Two new things that I’ll be working on in the near future is hooking up a BuddyPress social network to this blog (Then you guys can share ideas together and maybe go out for a latte at Starbuck’s.) and start a companion blog about ePublishing. I’ve got tons of nifty URLs to help those of you who are aspiring writers.
In case you are curious about who else is hooked up to Brain Sections and can’t wait for the BuddyPress thing to get started, I’ve put a community section in the bottom banner. Just click on the square and all kinds of good info comes up.


The HUD Homeless Assitance Program

Here is a good place to start when we wonder what help is available to those who are on the streets or in shelters:

Great reads on the web

Here are two interesting websites on homelessness that I would like to share:

www.guide2homelessness.blogspot.com

Although some people may not agree with all the blogger says, I can tell this person that I have had similar experiences and am glad they are writing about it. The one about trading conscience for a cot, and another about how some people will bring up your former homelessness as a put down rang true for me too.

www.money.howstuffworks.com/homeless/htm

Homelessness discussed in a money blog? They did a good job too. Must have had some lousy investments…