Making A Change for the Homeless

Homelessness is a worldwide issue we should address more. Over the past three months, I have interviewed and conducted research about the homeless community in Decatur, and what I found was both extraordinary and disheartening.

Homelessness increased from last year. The homeless population is always increasing and decreasing with the efforts of the Decatur community, but when researching and speaking to people in this community, there is one main reason why the numbers are constantly changing.

Decatur doesn’t have enough permanent housing for the homeless. Decatur has a lot of shelters that try to provide resources to help the individuals, but getting them permanent housing is difficult and not tried enough. Shelters can only do so much. Most shelters around Decatur do not get government funding and rely on churches and the community to financially sustain them. While Decatur can open shelters, Decatur is not able to provide permanent housing for the homeless.

This is an issue that is not easily fixable. Not only does Decatur need the funding to provide permanent houses, but the homeless need to feel comfortable living in those houses. The problem with providing housing for the homeless is they can feel overwhelmed or uncomfortable living on their own. This is what draws them back to shelters or living out on the streets again. When they live on the streets, most individuals do not feel safe. They do not feel safe living in Decatur.

When you ask someone about if they think Decatur is doing enough for the homeless community, you will get mixed answers. Some think Decatur is really helping combat homelessness and some think that Decatur isn’t doing enough. Decatur has a lot of abandoned buildings around town that just sit there and rot away. If Decatur can’t take care of its own community, how can it take care of the homeless individuals who are in extreme need of help?

The homeless community needs help. Men, women, and children of all ages are living without homes and cannot provide for themselves. They need help. How can they be helped? The answer isn’t simple. Like battling any hardship within a community, it takes time and a lot of effort. Homelessness cannot be cured overnight, but there are steps that we can take to make sure we are doing enough to help those in dire need.

The homeless don’t have a voice. It is up to us to be their voice and help raise more awareness and support. There are more people homeless than those who stand on the street corners and ask for money. There are people living in shelters and people living on the streets and in abandoned buildings. Some live under bridges and some eat out of cans they could scavenge. These are real people, real humans who need help. They never thought they would become homeless, but in an instant, they were.

Homelessness will not go away if we stand by and do nothing. Homelessness is right in front of our doorstep. It’s on the streets we walk on, it’s in our schools, it’s in our community. This is a real issue that devastates and destroys. It’s time we start to do more. We need to support our own people who are in need. It is important to help and be kind to one another.

The homeless are humans, too, just like us. They deserve to be treated the same way. They are not all scary individuals who are unclean or criminals. They are humans who got into a bad situation and were not able to get out of it. They need help and we should all be stepping up to do more. As a community, it is our job to help one another and make changes. So, let’s start to make a change to help those in need.