Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Blog Action Day 2008, Poverty - An Empowerment for Presence

38 million people in the U.S. experience hunger. If you're one of the fortunate citizens who has enough to share, why not get grateful, and take action?

Many cultures have safety measures built in to protect the poor from starvation. In the U.S., our communities are loose-knit at best. Families who do not qualify for government programs often fall through the cracks.

Ways you can help to address hunger in your community:

1. Contribute food to a soup kitchen, food program, or shelter.
2. Volunteer your time, energy, or financial donations at a soup kitchen, food program, or shelter.
3. Informally sponsor a newly single-mom or dad who may be struggling to make ends meet. Bring food unasked for. Be someone's guardian angel, or faerie godmother.
4. Sponsor a homeless person in your community. Choose someone in need, and bring her or him clothes, blankets, food, toiletries. Gifts.
5. Make a meal, and bring it to a place where homeless folks hang out. Stick around, ask questions, offer an ear. You will end up nourishing the soul, and not just the body. (And, your soul as well.)

Together, we can lessen the strain of hunger. Offer hope, offer help.

Consider yourself empowered.



Anonymous said...

HI, yes I agree there are too many hungery people, I kive in a small well off town but even here I know there is a problem even though it is well hidden behind closed doors. I do what I can but it's hard some times when my family is tight on money too. Drop by my page to say hi if you get the chance. Wendy

J.J. Catte Man said...

Dear LaSara,
I'm glad to see you raising awareness of how simple it is REALLY... to make a small habit of offering hope to the 'down and out' or just plain 'down on their luck'.
As you know from my personal e-mails, I have been one such. & I like to point out and emphasize the fact that though anyone may have a decent place to live and nice clothes to wear, even despite the fact a person may not be homeless...does not mean that they are financially 'well-to-do' let alone even 'well off' just at the moment. (Especially during these 'economic down-turn' crises our mass media keeps maddeningly & ridiculously dismissively down-playing as a 'recession'...because no one wants to hear the 'd'-word 'round here).

Over the course of over 2 years, I had asked any of my friends (who did not subsist largely on junk-food-l.o.l.-but also, unfortunately no joke! ;) and a couple neighbors to help me by just inviting me to a meal with them once a week. Out of over a dozen people I had explained and discussed my situation with, only 2 offered to feed me at least one dinner a week.
HOWEVER...NONE of them followed through.
Why? Simply because they didn't want to believe that a man such as myself could REALLY have such difficulties preventing him from earning enough money to stay above the poverty line.

The merely unfortunate and the outright destitute don't always carry signs around the street with them. People should seriously ask themselves, "if it happened to me, would I stand out on the corner, of MY OWN neighborhood, begging for help?" The answer is of course MOST people DO NOT!

ASK the people you care about, how THEY REALLY ARE...1st. & PLEASE be prepared to actually listen and REALLY believe that starvation is a very serious problem even amongst the most 'presentable' of people. Save the 'judging a book by it's cover' routine for another, healthier day.

Sincerely yOurs,
& a.f.a.
~ Jim Catte