Today I wanted to share a bit more about instilling hopein those who face hopeless situations. There are many facing trauma; loss, financial ruin, loss of income, in these days. Those of us with paid employment are extremely fortunate. And many are not.
I have been working with the Margate Independent foodbank for some time and have set up a clothing and shoe bank. I looked back at some photos of the items laid out on the tables recently and they have all gone. Which shows the demand. Yesterday a man who has no permanent home wandered in through the open door and spotted a lovely jacket, with the label on, which he then took. He also asked for some trainers and I explained the pair he wanted had gone ( I gave him an alternative pair). Items whisk off our rails and tables.
But it isn’t about clothes. And I am beginning to understand that the answer to homelessness isn’t about a home. Yes that is extremely important. But yesterday, when I saw two of our guests with their lovely clothing, it dawned on me that people with no homes like to look nice. They like nice clothes, just like the rest of us. Clothing gives us self=respect and furthermore an identity.
So the clothing bank is giving people dignity, which leads to a restoration of hope. I feel that we need to not compartmentalise things; people are whole people and we need to take a holistic view of homelessness, not a superficial approach. There are many wonderful organisations out there tackling this issue, but this is an interesting angle I haven’t particularly thought of previously. Obviously, people need nutritious food also and that is where the food bank come in (one gentleman told me of this lovely meal he had eaten which he didn’t want to finish). But clothes help people to look smart and make us all feel nice.
Today’s recipe of hope is to support any local initiatives offering help to those in need. It may be your local foodbank (one tin of beans is appreciated), or giving a cash donation of any amount. And if you are in need, take the help, because it is there for you. Don’t feel you aren’t worthy. I know some of us struggle to receive, but there are times we need to do so.
Bless all those of you working with others to help at this tough time X