The Other Side: Understanding Homelessness
Homelessness, as defined in the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, is the condition of people having “no fixed, regular, and adequate night time residence.” This condition is also possibly the latest miserable ordeal that more than 554,000 people in the United Stated have to battle through in this day and age. Many people are familiar with their living conditions yet choose to look the other way instead of helping them. SapiBon Foundation, Inc. is a Charitable Organization in Fort Lauderdale, Florida that devotes its efforts to helping those who have no homes of their own. We believe that homelessness should not be looked at with judgment and disdain, but with compassion and understanding. The following lists the aspects of homelessness that not many people know about:
People reach the point of homelessness not merely because of laziness or languor but because there is a dire insufficiency of affordable housing and limited scale of housing assistance programs. Decent housings are hard to come by, especially for low-income earning individuals. They are forced to live from paycheck to paycheck all in the name of maintaining a good household and a roof above their heads. The place that’s supposed to be their shelter often turns into a burdensome responsibility that they have to lug around their shoulders.
Having no income often equates to being incapable of paying for housing, food, childcare, healthcare, and education. These limitations in their resources are often attributed to unemployment. Unemployment rates are remaining high, and with the economy right now, there’s no guarantee that jobs will be easier to find in the years to come. Even if work is found, this does not automatically lift them out of poverty and out of homelessness.
- Domestic Violence
Domestic violence is often left out of the equation when it comes to homelessness. Battered women, especially those who live in the brinks of poverty, are forced to choose between staying in an abusive relationship and homelessness. Most of them choose the streets. This case is not only rampant among abused women but also common among adolescents with abusive families.
- Mental Illness
The relationship between mental illness and homelessness are inextricable. According to the U.S. Conference of Mayors (2008), there are about 16% of the homeless population of single adults who suffer from some form of severe and persistent mental illness. This issue is indeed complex and controversial as to how they have come to end up in the streets. Perhaps their own families have shunned them, perhaps they got lost. The thing is, they are out there, and they need help.
One of the many advocacies that we support here at SapiBon Foundation Inc. is towards helping the homeless stand back up and start their own life again. We are a local non-profit organization in Florida, and we are here to guide you in your path to giving back. Share your legacy to this world and make it better.
We accept donations of any kind – goods, money, and services. Your efforts will greatly be appreciated. Join us now in our goal to help those in need.
Reference: National Coalition for the Homeless, “NCH Public Policy Recommendations: HUD McKinney-Vento Reauthorization”, Washington, D.C., September 14, 2009