Helping the Homeless

United States
January 6, 2007 9:25pm CST
Today, while on a business trip I noticed a couple on th side of the road holding a sign that said, "Hungry, everybody needs help sometime." I had a few bags of chips and an unopened bottle of water in my car that my mom had given on my last visit to see her. Obviously, I had not eaten them and really wasn't planning on it today, so I figured it would be best to give it to them. I understand how some think about people on the side of the road holding signs. They want drugs and beer and would rather have money than food. I have ran in to people who ask me for change and when I try giving them food they turn me down. I had a feeling about these people, yes dirty and unkept I felt they really wanted food today, so as I said earlier I delivered. After that, I noticed several more people holding signs, sitting on roadsides and even more loitering outside gas stations. I felt bad for not being able to help everyone. It saddens me to see the street full of homeless individuals and hungry veterans. I even saw a woman with one leg on crutches and her sign said "On my last leg" What do you say to that? Do you give them money. I wish I could have provided her with a bed, hot shower and a meal, but who knows what anyone is capable of? They could rob me or hurt me. Do you help homeless or needy people? What are your thoughts?
10 people like this
50 responses
@mikaghi (389)
• United States
7 Jan 07
homelessness worried me to.US is the world's powerful nation and still there are people who love on streets!! its very sorry. i really wish we could do something to solve this problem. i help people everyway i can but it doesn't go a long way
2 people like this
@mari61960 (4895)
• United States
7 Jan 07
I agree, there is no excuse for poverty and homelessness in the US. I can understand why poor countries have the problem that is different. It's one of my biggest pet peeve and really ticks me off. I wish I could do more to solve the problem but I don't think it will ever go away.
@profclark (512)
• United States
7 Jan 07
I understand how you feel. It seems that we throw away enough food every day to feed the world, but we don't see the connection. I suggest you donate money and/or time to local food banks and kitchens for the homeless. The problem of homelessness is complex, and a good portion of it has to do with how we do not address mental health issues sufficiently. Find the organizations that are actually doing the work with people and support them. If enough of us do that, perhaps we can turn this thing around.
2 people like this
@mari61960 (4895)
• United States
7 Jan 07
Great response.
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Jan 07
Kudos to you for helping someone when most people won't. I would give food if I had it to give, definatly. however i would not give money. if they really are hungry then they will accept the food with no problem. as far as helping anyone in my home or whatnot? I would not bring anyone to my home where my children live. however , If i had the money i would get them a cheap motel room and a pair of clean clothes and a good meal. that way they can get a good nights sleep a shower and a good meal. it would be my hope that they would make good with that time and do something to better thier situation. maybe go job hunting , find a suitable shelter or work program that can get them out of thier current situation.
2 people like this
@amit_sood (168)
• India
7 Jan 07
now a days we look so many people are sitting on a road and asking for money it is very bad habbit to give that person who is looking in good condition as well as in young age we should help that person who really need like old man and old women they really need of money and other things so my request to all of you that please help poor old man and women they really have a need of it.
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Jan 07
The poor will always be with us.Some people but not all are there for a reason.
1 person likes this
• United States
7 Jan 07
I have been known to help a few times. Like you I am nervous about these people so I have never picked them up but have on numerous times done just like you did and give them whatever I might have on me. I have even been known on more than one occasion to go into a store and buy them something.
1 person likes this
@GardenGerty (99167)
• United States
7 Jan 07
You have a kind and good heart, and you did the right thing. As many people have said, this is in part a mental health issue. Sometimes it really is a lifestyle choice, but that does not mean that help is not needed. We have one man who makes a regular circuit around certain towns, with his dog. A member of our church visitied with him, and brought him to church. We have at least one homeless young woman who lives in our small town who would rather be homeless than deal with the situation she came from. I do not know the whole story, but I usually know where to find her. I like the suggestion someone else made that we should volunteer in places that provide services to the homeless. I also know that in our community several church groups have banded together to help people in this kind of need as well as other situations. I hope you find a way to help that feels meaningful to you.
• United States
7 Jan 07
i try to often.its really hard to past by in the most populated area of homeless in my home town.i wish i could help the ones how would really want to help them selves out.
1 person likes this
@eaforeman6 (8983)
• United States
7 Jan 07
I think its good if you have food that you can give them.There need to be more shelters then what there are really. I hope they work towards helping more of these people get settled safely back into homes and apartments.It was good of you to do what you did.
• United States
7 Jan 07
There are so many food kitchens around that there is no need for the homeless to go hungry. Why give money to them when they will only be off to find their next fix or bottle. It is sad.
@Kowgirl (3491)
• United States
7 Jan 07
Yeah I hear you! I use to be a sucker for everyone I thought needed a helping hand. I would pick up hitchhikers, give money, even took a guy home with me and let him use my shower then gave him some clothes to wear...lucky I didn't get hurt or robbed. BTW This guy (David) came back 3 days later to tell me I helped him get a job. We became good friends. He even helped me move when no one else would. There are some good people who are down on their luck and really do need a little help. Then there are some who make more than I do panhandeling...My daughter bought food for a man who was begging and he threw the food in the garbage, then we watched him walked across the parking lot and drive off in a NEW truck. Thats when we noticed the gold watch he was wearing on his wrist hanging out the window. I live in Florida so we have a lot of panhandelers. Helping is nice but be careful.
• United States
7 Jan 07
There are quite a few homeless in my town. And quite a few scammers. Some have even proudly done interviews about their scam - or business, as they call it. According to their own calculations, some of them earn more panhandling than I do! Even so, sometimes a particular one jerks my heartstrings enough that I will give them money directly. In general, however, my policy is to donate to the Salvation Army and the local homeless shelter. Then I know I am not just supporting someone's addiction. I did see three signs that really got my attention. I was in the wrong lane when I saw them, or I would have donated just out of appreciation for the new verbage - and in one case, honesty. Here they are: 1) Not homeless or Jobless. Just want $$ for Weekend. (Held by a clean-cut, nicely dressed young man!) 2) Space-ship out of Gas. Need $$. (Held by two clean-cut, grinning young people who were clearly enjoying the double-takes their sign elicited.) 3) Social Security Let Me Down. Please Help. (Held by a sweet-looking grandma-type lady.)
• United States
7 Jan 07
A friend of mine had just gone to McDonald's and saw a homeless person standing on the side of the road. She stopped and gave him a hamburger. When she drove away, she looked in her rearview mirror and saw him throw it on the ground. Another person I know offered a homeless person a job at a high hourly rate shoveling horse manure. The homeless person turned it down stating that he makes more money panhandling. One time on the morning radio station I listen to, a caller stated that sometimes to make extra money, he dresses like a homeless person and panhandles at the intersection of a busy road. He said he makes an average of $200 a day. So needless to say, I am very skeptical about giving these people any hand outs.
@joanna07 (111)
• Ireland
7 Jan 07
i concure with that statement and truley comprehensiveness with everything. the homeless are people too surprisingly.all this is crazilisious
• India
7 Jan 07
helping helpless is a great deed
@jolanda33 (720)
• Netherlands
7 Jan 07
here in holland we have a special newspaper! the sellers are homeless people, and they can sell it. we pay 1,50 (in euro's) and 50 cent is for the seller. At the end of the day they can buy a meal, and find a place to sleep! i always buy those papers, and sometimes i give them some extra money! All the homeless people (if they are legal ofcourse) get goverment money, and with the selling of the papers they can try to get a life again! we don't have much people beggin thank god, and i will not give the beggers money!
@WebMann (4732)
• Canada
7 Jan 07
If I can help I will but not with money, like others have said. But it reminded me of something so long ago I hadn't thought about it for years. When I was about 16 or there abouts I had my favorite hang outs in Scarborough Ontario Canada and one day this homeless man came up and asked for a handout. I told him I wasn't fiving him money so he could go by booze and just walked away. He followed me and said he was going to do that, honest. I didn't give him any money but I agreed to take him in a restaraunt and feed him. So we went in my usual hangout, a little greasy spoon. I practically lived there. Everyone was staring and I was a bit embarassed to be with this guy. The lady that owned the place asked him to leave but I told her I would pay. She was a tough old bird but she had a heart of gold really. Any ways she got the guy some soup and bread to start with and he wolfed that down so fast he got physically sick. She kicked us both out of the restaraunt and as she was closing the door behind us she told me to bring the old man around back. She lived above her restaraunt and like I said she had a heart of gold but hide it very well. She didn't want to be taken advantage of. She took that old into her place, cleaned him up and gave him a place to sleep until he was rested and fed. She also told me that if I said anything I was never allowed back in her place. :) I was a bitter and hurt run away at age 15 and it was people like her that changed my life. So do a good deed, life is too short not to.
@Lady_Vincy (1542)
• United States
7 Jan 07
It's great that you helped them. More people around the world should do this. Maybe then there will be alot less homless on the streets.
@Karyee (57)
• Malaysia
7 Jan 07
It's good to hear that there are still helpful people around. Don't feel bad about not being able to help all the other needy. Everybody have to play their small role in helping needy in order to reduce suffering in this world. And world can be made a better place to live in by these good hearted citizens.
@gary87 (129)
• India
7 Jan 07
i help them out whenever i find a scope. but it hurts me when i cant do it due to some unavoidable circumstances. let me share with you all an incident about it. one day my mom and i wre going to the market. on the way we saw a little boy of nearly 10 years begging at the streets. one man came in front of him and started abusing him for no reason. i really felt for him and gathered some people and all of us took the boy to an orphange that day only. i really feel very happy that i could give shelter to a homeless child