- Politics and Social Issues
Yes, Your Community Needs YOU!
As long as there is just one person sleeping on the streets, your community needs you. If even one child is going hungry, your community needs you. Sure, there are preventative and protective resources in place for the less fortunate, but these are often flawed and oriented for long-term success, making them inefficient in dire moments. Good Samaritans are few and far between these days, with half of their noses in a cell phone and the other half too busy counting their money. It is each of our responsibilities, as a community, to help and support our neighbors in need.
Aside from blatantly giving away food to the poor and homeless, there are a ton of other ways to help the hungry. Ask local churches about organizing a food drive or preparing free meals for the less fortunate. Google food pantries and other free sources of food in your area. Speaking of which, the internet is an excellent resource for hungry people going without food. Sites like foodnotbombs.net salvage large quantities of food, which would have otherwise been discarded, in order to stand up against poverty.
Of course, you could always lend your spare bedroom or living room sofa to the less fortunate, sometimes helping provide shelter to those in need just isn't possible for various reasons. Not everyone has the room to spare. There are, however, other resources for the homeless, on the internet.
Become a couch-surfing host. Couchsurfing is an online community and mobile app available for both Android and iPhone. Although travelers primarily use it to find temporary places to sleep, Couchsurfing is full of untapped potential to help those in need of shelter. That being said, you don't have to be homeless to sign up with Couchsurfing, because the app features account that are exclusive to hosting. Simply make a Couchsurfing account via email or Facebook, advertise your home and more importantly, yourself, then conveniently connect with those in need of a place to stay.
To volunteer is to take the first small steps towards actual change. We should all give back to the communities in which we live and volunteering does just that. You can volunteer at homeless shelters, soup-kitchens or food pantries, nursing homes, and even some hospitals. Most cities will have a directory online for those interested in becoming a volunteer. Aside from volunteering some people can donate or sell their life insurance policies in a life settlement, thereby giving a living benefit to charities in their communities.
Make a Difference Today
The good folks of Reddit have assembled an ample list of resources for the poor and homeless, over on the r/vagabond subreddit. Their guide is constantly updated by Reddit users and features resources for finding shelter, food, work, and more. The community also associates with several communes, where work is traded for food and housing. These sites include WWOOF, Work-Away, and HelpX.