Friday, October 7, 2011

What are you doing for World Homeless Action Day?

Monday, October 10th will be the second annual World Homeless Action Day. In Chicago alone there are over 21,000 homeless individuals on a given night. Anyone can become homeless and stereotypes need to be replaced with accurate information. Most guests at the shelter never expected to be homeless. They previously had jobs and housing and just need assistance accessing resources so they can get back on their feet.

With millions of people around the world dealing with homelessness, it is clear that this is an issue that needs attention and that is exactly what the day was created to do. One of the co-founders, Brianna Karp, was in her early twenties when she lost her job and became homeless. While still homeless she became an advocate for other homeless people and started World Homeless Action Day as an opportunity for members of all communities to get involved. Hers is truly an inspirational story.

How can you observe World Homeless Action Day? You can respond to homelessness locally, by getting involved at a community shelter or outreach center and by using the day as a platform to speak out about the needs of the homeless. Since it is only the second year of this day of observance, its existence is not yet widely known. For this reason, it is more important than ever for us to share this information with others to allow for continued expansion of participation from organizations and community members. It also means we need to be creative in developing collaborative methods for observing this day. Homelessness can end, but only with community-wide involvement.

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