The tragic thing about homelessness is it’s not caused by one specific thing and our most vulnerable citizens can become permanently traumatized. If the statistics are to be believed, California has about 151,278 homeless individuals. The disabled make up 38%, the extremely low-income 30%, the mentally ill 25% and those with substance abuse problems 64%.
Fortunately while this isn’t an easy problem to solve, there are a variety of things you can do to support the homeless and ease their burdens. Following are a few examples:
- Education: You can educate yourself on the causes of homelessness, then help educate others around you if you see them acting unkindly or biased.
- Advocacy: You can write a letter to your local or state government to ask for more funding or programming for the homeless (i.e., “tiny home villages created on publically-owned lands,” safe camping grounds, and permanent housing).
- Bombas: You can buy a pair of socks from Bombas.com (https://bombas.com) and through their “Make a Purchase, Make Difference” program they’ll donate a pair of socks to the homeless on your behalf.
So far Bombas has donated more than 40 million items to more than 3,500 organizations.”
- American Vets https://www.amvetsnsf.org): According to the 2020 United States statistics there were 11,401 veterans living as homeless citizens. What you can do to help them and other vets is to either donate your unwanted clothing and goods to American Vets thrift stores by arranging a scheduled pick-up at your home, or you can buy something online from their thrift store or eBay site. I can personally attest to the great finds you can buy on there because when I went on their eBay site I found a green 1970s and some vintage jewelry for under $100 and from their thrift store site I found a vintage fashion illustration book.
“In 2019 from January-December they raised $24,328,714 from their thrift store, eBay site, and other endeavors.”
Finally, despite the impossibility of solving this problem, the consensus seems to be in order to get it under control this country needs to increase services, social connectedness, provide affordable housing and offer well-paying jobs.