How often do we take a minute to think about how lucky we are in life. It’s so easy to become wrapped up and consumed by our day to day issues that we forget how fortunate we are these days to have a roof over our head or even food on our tables, a luxury that not all can say that they have. It’s that time of year when we are more aware of what’s going on around us while we are prepping for the Christmas festivities. No matter where we live, there are always homeless people sitting outside the stores, freezing to death in the winter chill.
Homeless through choice you may say, I doubt it, one such lady I was talking to certainly wasn’t. An elderly lady, abandoned by her family at her time of need. She was forced to set up camp behind the local Tesco superstore, packed her few belongings into black bin bags every night, to prevent other homeless people from stealing from her. I’m not sure how old she is, but I suspect I least ten years younger than she looks.
The Salvation Army – Homeless Charity
The Salvation Army gave out over 5000 food parcels to families last year over the Christmas period alone.
So while I don’t know the long term answer to this, it’s a massive problem in the United Kingdom. There is always something we can do, a friendly hello, a quick chat, a hot drink, a bite to eat, or some loose change.
If you want to do more, get in touch with your local soup kitchen, YMCA or Salvation Army. I’ve started to cook for the local soup kitchen, not every week, but to help them out when the chef is off. Run entirely by volunteers, this soup kitchen opens three times per week for the homeless and the lonely. I cook the meal at home and then drop them round.
This year the Salvation Army is also running the Christmas Present Appeal, to provide toys for children at Christmas, who otherwise would not receive anything.
So whilst you are planning the most perfect Christmas for you and your family, don’t forget the less fortunate and just how easy it is for us all to make a difference.