Homeless Issue #122 01/24/18
The following was written by a fellow who was “living” in an abandoned trailer with part of the siding missing. I tried to use photographs of the pages he wrote in his hand but they would not transfer. There are 6 pages. He gives us an idea of what it would be like for us to be put in that situation. At the end I will tell you a little about his journey into homelessness.
(Page#1) Couches, cots, hammocks, stretchers, sleeping bags,piles of old clothes ….
Old campers, abandoned trailers, tents, caves, leaky roofs (better than no roof at all), broken windows covered w/old blankets or tarps that block the wind but not the cold. Plenty of sources of water, some potable, some not–, hot water? Leave it in a bucket in the sun for a while…., if there is any… sanitary conditions are primitive at best–a hole in the ground. So how does life go on? How do the poor and homeless survive? What, and how do we eat? If you’re lucky enough to be near someone willing to let you do so, you may have an extension cord running from a house to your hovel…. a light or two, a radio or a TV (for two more months at least)–not much though, a refrigerator is iffy, a microwave is out of the question because of the power required…..generators are nice, as long as you have the resources to be able to buy gasoline for them and the ability to transport the gas the 30 or 50 so miles round trip from where you are to where (Page #2) you can find gas, and then back up the mountain. Vehicles are watched driving by more than ridden in–if you can afford a license, registration, insurance and the price of a vehicle. You’re probably not going to be able to relate to the above–simply because if you are, the amount of money necessary to “legallly” own and operate a vehicles is usually forever out of reach, because any cash you are able to pull in can’t realistically be saved up as it gets spent quickly on things that are absolutely required for survival. If you have a delibitation disease, any no medical coverage, medications are expensive–often you have o make do with stuff that isn’t really what you would be prescribed, but is close enough to relieve excruciational pain, or help you breathe or keep your heart from exploding. (The people that help you in these matters do so without reservation, knowing that in doing so that they are committing a felony, but the need those people feel to help others (Page #3) overcomes any fears of punishment, and God bless them for it–without these meds, many homeless (or just poor) people would not be alive today. I know I would’nt be.
And now the perhaps most important thing of all–FOOD. The Air Force survival manual describes “pine forests” of our type as one of the most least likely places on the planet to be able to find enough food to survive, (wildlife not withstanding) only surpassed by the arctic and the desert. Cooking is done, if at all, either with a fire, or small propane stoves. If you have electricity, maybe a toaster oven or a hot plate. If not, food might be cold, but hey–cold food is much better than no food at all. (Page#4) Fortunately, there are many organizations that are involved in the acquiring and distribution of foodstuffs and commodities for the poor, homeless and needy. Without these various organization, I hate to think how difficult things would be for so many without the help of some man, who do so without reward, except for satisfying the desire to do something when and how they can help. From those who volunteer their time to help on the gathering and distribution of food and commodities, to those who donate items and cash, including business, churches and private individuals, these selfless acs enables those in need to secure stability, comfort, shelter, and of course, food, the maintain,rebuild shattered live, to continue to struggle and survive and not give up hope in these hard times. I have what I consider to be a good knowledge of our language, but I find myself at a loss to adequately describe in (Page #5) words my gratitude and thanks for the times which these folks are indeed in deservance of for that which they do.
The Fed. Gov. does whatever it is they do (like gives $900,000,000 to rebuilding the “Palestinian infrastructure” in Gaza–[like such a thing ever existed!] meanwhile, here at home, they bale out bogusley inept auto corporations, savings and loan companies, and that 12K–(yeah, executives being unable to buy a new Rolls-Royce every year and has to fly commercial flights instead of using private company owned Lear Jets. Brings tears to my eyes–bummer! So much for our federal government.
On the state level, it’s not that bad–not much better, some unable to do their jobs properly probably is their best excuse (if that can count for one)> Anyway, the Fed, State and Local governments (Page #6) are not really they who this letter is in regards to, and I only mention them because of their inability and/or failure to deliver/provide the help which we so desperately need-that is provided by people–just folks, families and individuals.
He is a 3rd generation southern Californian. Armed forces veteran. Skilled in many manual crafts. Looks to be in 70’s but was 60 years old when I knew him. No drugs. Alcohol was a problem 10-20 years ago. Family long gone from contact. He got hurt and lost his job as a maintenance worker at an apartment complex. Although homeless, he was very helpful at our shelter locations, and helpful to other persons who had problems. Since I moved to NorCal, I lost contact. But two years ago I saw him when I returned to SoCal for a visit. He had a smile, gave a hug and wanted to know how I was doing.
My wife, an Administrative Secretary, went “bonkers” not making corrections in spelling and word usage while typing from his transcript.
I have an opportunity for you to interact with the homeless population. Only 2 hours, 3:00 – 4:30 PM, one day a week, Thursday or Friday, long time commitment. Stopping at only two locations. Upper Room and Christ Like Services.
Work with JSS, distributing, toilet paper, socks, hygienic supplies, clothing, jackets, batteries, underwear, while showing understanding to those in our homeless community. All from the trunk of your car, with a JSS magnetic sign on your car..
The only cost to you is tax deductible mileage.
This is an opportunity for you to get involved.
Let my know ASAP if you want to participate directly with the homeless population. And see where your generous donations go.
Please think about it.