You see homeless person on the corner.
You throw out a couple bucks.
You drive away.
We have hearts to help the homeless but is our helping actually doing good? Some cases it's not. Some people truly just need some cash to get their lives back on track, but more often than not, handing cash out gives people access to substances they might be working to fight.
Here are 4 ideas of what to give the homeless.
We consulted Mae, a 15 year old, who decided to pack the best bag she could and hand out to the homeless. Mae, after rallying her community, has passed out over a hundred bags. She calls them "Godsend Bags". (She's our new inspiration icon - it's fine, she can be yours too). There's a video of more ideas coming out - but here's what to start with.
This is Mae:
#1 - Contact list
Mae says - surprisingly the homeless have access to phones. She put together a sheet of shelters as well as free or affordable places medical care (dentists - the whole bit). Oh and she laminated the sheet cause, rain. You can see what free medical care is in your area - also check and see what Medicaid covers.
ALSO make a list of places that hire second chance workers.
If you are in Columbus, Ohio we know Abe's Kitchen, Hot Chicken Takeover, She Has a Name Cleaning Services, or CleanTurn. Or places that give preferences to vets. Again if you are in Columbus, Ohio - Pearl Interactive Network. If you know of more places to recommend leave us a comment below.
#2 Protein Bars
If you want to keep something in your car to hand out instead of cash on the spot - keep protein bars. Mae packs a Cliff Bar. If you want to contribute more, just ask someone out to eat. Use your judgement and go have a decent meal with someone. If you like Chipotle, I'm sure they would like Chipotle.
#3 Travel tooth brush kit
Homeless persons are 12 times more likely than individuals with stable housing to have dental problems. Also the travel kit for a tooth brush is key to keep it clean. Yes, that is a star wars toothbrush. Yes, we're jealous.
Well if someone were to hand me cash the thing I wouldn't want to get is deodorant, but society thinks it's necessary.
We've got a video of Mae sharing more of what she packs and some of her stories coming out. You don't want to miss it.