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Review by Chris O.11 years ago
This is a primary resource for information about homelessness in the USA and recommended if not compulsory reading for anyone who thinks their home is going to be there for life. As thousands will now tell you, foreclosure is just a step away from even the most secure of us. And in this country especially, one major illness may lead to bankruptcy and homelessness in a remarkably short time, for anyone of any age. Whoever you may be, middle-class, middle-management, middle-aged and looking forward to those years of pensioned luxury to come, look at the streets outside your doors. They could be a lot closer than you think.
There is a wealth of information about homelessness on this site, largely in the form of downloadable reports that you can read offline at your convenience. There is some information here to help you, should you find yourself faced with impending homelessness. And of course, you can donate to this worthy cause and do something to help make a difference, too (You may make a one-time donation of $10 by cell phone, if you text HOME to 85944 and reply Yes to confirm your $10 donation to NCH. Subscription options are also available.)
The NCH is a constant campaigner for the rights of the homeless and has been working to dispel the myths and fight discrimination since 1982. Take time to read even just a little of one report here, perhaps the one on the cities now actively restricting access to shared food by the homeless, and you'll begin to understand what we're up against.
Can this be a country that legally prevents a church from sharing food with its homeless and hungry parishioners? Yes. Is this the country that, ever since and despite the Great Depression, has persisted in associating homelessness with worthlessness and laziness? Yes. This is a country in which those who do not care to see homeless people on the streets would rather they starve than be housed.
It's not the only country where this feeling is widespread, of course, but it also maintains the myth of its hospitality and compassion towards those who come to it, hungry and without hope. And this myth, along with many others which suggest that being poor and hungry really isn't so bad, or really doesn't affect that many, or even, that it doesn't really exist, these myths pervade a society that is increasingly concerned only with larger and flatter televisions.
You owe it to yourself to be better informed and less willing to believe the myths. Next time you see a homeless person on the street, make a mental note to spare a bit of time to find out what your society is doing to help them, or not. More than three quarters of a million children in state schools are homeless. They, at least, deserve a more hopeful future than this.
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