We could all do more to help the homeless

Paola Estrada, Reporter

Many of us have seen homeless people, whether on the sides of the road or possibly by participating in volunteer organizations that seek to help them. Consequently, we may find ourselves wondering what causes homelessness.

There is an array of potential causes. One of them is the reality that many owners and managers do not wish to hire people who have a history of crimes and drug abuse. Another potential cause is that many people fall into depression or another mental illness that put a dent in their ability to work.

People are inclined to say that it is the fault of the homeless for becoming what they are. It is not that simple. Many of the homeless people dealt with domestic violence and poverty that unfortunately developed into tragic effects. We tend to judge one another so easily without taking the initiative to look into a person’s past. This restricts us from helping and engaging with people who really need it.

There are ways to help the homeless, however. Little donations can go a long way to alleviate their struggles. Cans of food, blankets, or even socks can help ease their hunger and cold. Even taking the time to talk and listen to someone going through this rough patch can help ease their pain and turmoil.

For some of us, the issues of homelessness hits close to home.

“My uncle has been homeless for five years now. We’ve tried to give him shelter, but he won’t ever take it. The reason why he is homeless is because he had a mental disorder very similar to schizophrenia. He hears voices inside his head, and he always thinks the government is after him. That is the reason he won’t stay anywhere. He likes to be off the grid,” Ms. Green, a language arts teacher, said.

Homelessness is a real issue, and it is not alleviated by misjudgment and stereotypes surrounding these people. Being understanding and caring for those going through this hard time can help provide a solution to this problem.