" I never
imagined that I would be homeless." Although I have read this statement
made over and over again, the facts behind it remain astonishing.
The facts are that there are millions of homeless in America today.
Many of these people had no choice but to become homeless.
Economic problems such as
being laid off work, or the rise in the cost of housing had lead people
to live on the streets. Many of the homeless are women that have
become divorced or have left home because of physical abuse. These
women have no education because they have not been given the chance to
go and get the education that it takes nowadays to get the job, so they
are forced to live on the streets. They have no family to help them
and they are left with no other choice. People with mental illnesses
also become homeless quite often. These people are incapable of handling
the stress of living on their own. These people get kicked out of
their homes and are to ashamed to go to their families because of their
illness, so we see them on the streets struggling to stay warm. Teenage
mothers are also forced to live on the streets because their families will
not help them. The fathers are not there and that forces them to
live on the streets. So they must resort to prostitution to pay for
the food that their young ones need to stay alive. There are many other
people that become homeless for many different reasons. Some of these
people can not help becoming homeless. Some of these people are the illegal
immigrants that come here from other places to get a better life but end
up not having enough money to make it in this hard world that we live in.
Teenage runaways have different reasons for leaving home but all have the
same reason for becoming homeless. They simply just do not have enough
money. Others are drug and alcohol abusers and disabled people.
With this list of people there must be some way that we can help these
There has been many programs
that have been available to help these homeless, but only have only succeeded
in the short run and have failed in the long run. There has been
homeless in America ever since the colonial times and not much progress
has been made in the 200 plus years in helping these people. We have
adopted programs such as FDR's New Deal in which the government produced
more jobs that took little skill, and made these jobs available to the
poor. Social Security, which is not welfare, was adopted and is still
going. It is where you pay into it while you work and when you for
some reason become unable to work you will have this money. HUD housing
has been available also to the homeless and the poor. We also have
AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children) and Welfare which gives
federal money to homeless and poor and helps them get back on their feet.
But these programs seem more to help the poor with homes and not the poor
without homes. We must think of ways to help the poor without homes
- the homeless.
There are many shelters were
the homeless can go to get out of the cold and sleep on a cot instead of
a bench or the hard ground, but families sometimes find it dangerous to
sleep there in fear that the few possessions that they do own will be stolen.
We should make these places safer for the homeless, and set up programs
within these shelters that will help the homeless find jobs and homes.
We could have the vacant apartment buildings opened and have the homeless
stay there so that they have an address to get their selves a job.
We could take some of the money that we are using to set up these little
shelters, and set up larger ones in the cities that need them the most.
We could all volunteer a little of our time to serve dinners to these people
and to help build homes for the homeless. We could give a little
of our money to those who have none. A little of our time will go
a long way.
Homelessness is a big problem
in our country today, but there are very few programs set up to help them.
We all need to work together to help those less fortunate because you would
want someone to help you if you where in that position, so we should do
our best to help them.