It seems everywhere you look there is a person in need of love and attention. The helpless: children, the mentally ill, and the homeless. It was impossible to miss the extreme poverty amid the glitter of the Olympic games in Rio. Rampant pollution, ramshackle dwellings, the blue water containers on every roof top, a county mired in poverty.
We don’t need to look to South America for poverty. America has roughly 45 million people living in poverty and 16 million of them are children. There are roughly 578,000 people homeless on any given day. The homeless population is where many of the mentally ill end up after they’ve fallen through the cracks. These are staggering numbers for the ninth richest country in the world. The average income in the United States is $57,045. The poverty threshold for one person in the U.S. is $12,071. I don’t know how you, but I find these numbers heartbreaking.
What can we do? Whatever you can afford. Five dollars’ worth of canned goods or toiletries. Grocery stores offer bags of food at different times of year. This should be a year around option. I’ve stood in line behind middle-class or upper middle-class patrons and seen them decline to give $5 to feed the hungry. Any of us could find ourselves homeless. I am blessed and thankful. Any one of could find ourselves in a flood zone, or the path of a tornado or wild fire.
Are you willing to give and ask friends to help?