Does giving money to beggars help or hurt them?

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  1. Joan King profile image71
    Joan Kingposted 11 years ago

    Does giving money to beggars help or hurt them?

  2. Josak profile image59
    Josakposted 11 years ago

    Having begged as a child, I can tell you it's definitely good, often it was the difference between eating that day or not.

  3. peeples profile image93
    peeplesposted 11 years ago

    There is no way of knowing. Some beggers are those who choose not to try to better themselves while others are people that are doing what they can and still it isn't enough. Unless there is a full interview before you hand them money you just have to hope it is for the good. The other option is to never give anything in which case we are selfish. Everyone has been a begger at some point in time. Some beg for money, others beg for a sale, a job, daddy's money.

  4. Cre8tor profile image94
    Cre8torposted 11 years ago

    It's unfortunate but I don't feel I can trust complete strangers with my money. I hate that I feel this way but often the money goes to feed a bad habit. I help people I know quite often but beggars...I usually will offer them whatever it is that they say they need the money for and they usually decline.

    Beggar: "Can I get some money to feed my family?"
    Me: "I can take you inside and buy you some food."
    Beggar: "That's okay, just give me the money and I'll do it."
    Me: "If you need food, let's go in and get some."
    Beggar: "Nevermind."

    That's what I thought.

  5. jeanniedoe profile image57
    jeanniedoeposted 11 years ago

    Some do help beggars and some do not. There are some beggars who begged for money because they badly needed it (like for their basic needs), in contrast there are some beggars who begged for money just to feed there vices.

  6. pstraubie48 profile image80
    pstraubie48posted 11 years ago

    I refuse to give money to someone who asking for money. I used to but smartened up when I saw them get in a car and drive away, go buy cigarettes or other unnecessary items with it. I have had people, many times, approach me and ask for money to buy gas. I have told them to follow me to the gas station and I will give them some gas. Most do not take that offer. So not everyone out there who is asking for help really deserves it.
    What I do now is, I buy a meal including a drink and take it to them. I have been homeless. I know what it feels like. If you are really in need, the meal is a wonderful gift.
    and no I did not answer the question directly..

  7. taw2012 profile image60
    taw2012posted 11 years ago

    Giving money to beggars obviously help them. But at the same time you are hurting the development of a nation or a society. Beggars are not in need of money but in need of a living for which they do beg. So its better that they are rehabilitated some how so that they would be free from begging any more.

    1. Catherine Kane profile image84
      Catherine Kaneposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Long range, it'd be good to help them find work- but first they have to survive....
      You can tell the quality of a culture by how it treats its vulnerable members...

  8. Beege215e profile image59
    Beege215eposted 11 years ago

    I don't give money to beggars, I will buy cooked food or a warm drink on a cold day,  I have cooked meals for hungry families, but I don't think that giving cash to beggars solves any problem. Many times, as others have stated, beggars will use the cash for alcohol or drugs and that will only perpetuate the problems they have. Money is not the answer, help is the answer. Food helps, shelter helps, clean clothes help. and I will give all of these, but I will not give money.  It may sound harsh, but I will not donate a dime to drugs and alcohol. I would rather work toward a solution.

  9. profile image0
    Sooner28posted 11 years ago

    Does feeding people make them lazy?  Hardly...

  10. Cow Flipper profile image76
    Cow Flipperposted 11 years ago

    This question has been asked by most people at one time or another. I think of it this way, morally if you give someone money that is begging for a handout you must not make a judgement call before you do so. If you are going to give them money then you should be able to hand over that dollar and not feel like (YOU) have been ripped off. Just walk away happy that no matter what that person does with it that you did the right thing. It is their choice to buy a bottle of booze or another hit. But maybe they will get a place to sleep, a bite to eat, some new clothes, gas for their car, food for their kids, wife, or dog. It shouldn't matter to you at all what they are going to do with it. Would you question your grandma if she asked you for a dollar? No, you just give it to her. Just having the will to give that money to someone who needs it more than yourself should be reward enough.

    One very cold winter night my family and I were at a gas station filling up our car and a homeless man with a shopping cart full of garbage bags and clothing was standing on the sidewalk sifting through his stuff. He was scruffy with a big black beard and a long dirty wool coat and scarf. His feet were wrapped in cloth. My wife looked at me and then reached into her purse and took out a 100 dollar bill. She then smiled and told me, "Give this to him." I promptly smiled back took the money and walked up to the homeless man. Now he had not begged for anything from us at all.

    I walked up to him and handed him the hundred dollar bill. "This is for you sir." was what I said. He looked at me with his eyes wide. "What do you want for this?" he asked me. I shook my head, "Nothing sir, my wife and kids are in the car over there and we want to help you out. It's real cold and my wife and I think you need it more than we do." With tears in his eyes he shook my hand, "Thank you, thank you, god bless you both, god bless your family." I smiled with tears in my eyes back at him shook his hand and my wife and kids waved to him.

    A week later I saw the same homeless man, he had a bike this time with a small trailer on it filled with all his stuff. He had new clothes and he was clean. It made me feel good that we had a hand in that.

    It should never be about what will they do with (My Money). Money comes and goes. It isn't something you really own. Just give in the hope of helping your fellow man. Thanks.

  11. wiserworld profile image87
    wiserworldposted 11 years ago

    It would only hurt them if they spend it on drugs or alcohol. Sometimes it's better just to give them some food.

  12. spartucusjones profile image91
    spartucusjonesposted 11 years ago

    The reality is that there are those that are professional beggars and they make a pretty good living off it. There is also those that may be legitimately homeless but they would use the money for drugs and booze.

    Because of these factors I don't feel comfortable directly giving them money. But backed when I lived in a city area where this was more prevalent, I have offered to purchase certain items. At times I've also had those gift cards with unused balances for different grocery stores and restaurants. I would offer them these as well. It is a good gauge whether or not they are legit. If they insist that they only want cash (and I've had this happen before) then this is a clear indicator that you probably don't want to give them the money.

  13. AnnaCia profile image78
    AnnaCiaposted 11 years ago

    The following is my opinion respecting others.  We are used to refer to beggars as "they, they, they", when they are be part of "Us".  There have been a number of our beggars who used to have jobs, families, income and homes.  A large percentage of beggars are individuals with mental or physical conditions or even people who did not have the chance or did not have the capacity to develop skills.  I do not know what my future will be; and I have known beggars who are descent.  As in every society, every social class, business, and so on, there are going to be bad potatoes.  In my case, when I have the money I help and I greet; Other times I help with food or clothes.  An idea that I put in action is that I have a bag of clothes, shoes or maybe snacks and when I see a person in need, or a beggar, I give the bag to him/her.  I do not think that giving money to a beggar who is respectful, polite and thankful will hurt.

  14. John Holden profile image60
    John Holdenposted 11 years ago

    If somebody is down and out, why deny them the release of alcohol or cigarettes?
    I agree that it's not good that they should lie about their reasons for wanting money but sad that they feel that they have to.
    I think that if I give somebody money it becomes theirs and it is not up to me to dictate what they spend it on.

  15. smzclark profile image60
    smzclarkposted 11 years ago

    As everyone's said so far, I will buy them a hot drink or bite to eat and if they don't accept it you have your answer (if you were to give them money it probably would not have helped them in any way)

  16. Lisa HW profile image62
    Lisa HWposted 11 years ago

    Once someone is at the point where he's begging, I don't think much more can be done to hurt him.    My thinking is that if I were living in the streets (especially if the streets were like they are in Winter where I live), I'd imagine that after awhile a person probably starts to feel as if he'll lose his mind or may find things so unbearable he'd want to kill himself if he doesn't get some relief (maybe through drugs, alcohol, or at least smoking cigarettes) .  So, whether my money went for food or any of those other things, I wouldn't care.  Either way, it would be helping.  Anything to help the individual get through the next half hour or next day.  Maybe tomorrow will be a better day for him.  Maybe it won't be.  I just know that if I were the one begging in the streets I'd sure hope someone would help me keep my sanity long enough to be able to keep trying to find a way out.  (And in the case of the person who has already lost his sanity, all the more reason to be damned glad it isn't me and share a measly few dollars with someone who needs it).

  17. HubbyMaker profile image61
    HubbyMakerposted 11 years ago

    Well In all reality, giving money to the poor is helping them. Most "Beggars" or "Homeless" people will use it for food and not drugs like most people think. How can you spend money on drugs when you are starving and haven't even fed yourself? You can't live off drugs.

  18. JJ Pascoe profile image62
    JJ Pascoeposted 11 years ago

    I don't think you can answer this question, anymore than you could answer, 'Do office workers take sugar in their coffee', or 'do bus drivers like orchids?'.

    Many different people, from wide and varied walks of life end up needing the help of others at some point.

    Whether it helps or not would depend entirely on the situation of the individual... and yes, they are still individuals! Like any other walk of life, some people will be lazy, other will be resourceful, some have a goal and know exactly what they need to get there, others have an 'easy come, easy go' attitude. Some will have problems with addiction, some will enjoy the release of recreational relaxants, others will have never touched a drug (legal or otherwise), in their whole lives.

    Some will have chosen their way of life, whilst others had it chosen for them.
    Some may pity YOU for being trapped and tied to your responsibilities and think YOU'RE the one who needs to be helped!

  19. First Daughter profile image61
    First Daughterposted 11 years ago

    its always good to give people a help in hand, how ever your going to come across thoughs who beg without a need for it! london streets are full of people who beg by day and live in a dream house by night. its a catch 22!

    if u think that the money you give will only be spent on drugs or booze then only give money to people selling the big issue!

  20. Joyette  Fabien profile image86
    Joyette Fabienposted 11 years ago

    It depends! If the person is truly in need it cannot hurt to help. We are all called upon to feed the hungry in our midst.True they might use the money to purchase drugs, but since one cannot be sure, I think it is better to give on the chance that the person is really in need .

  21. kathleenkat profile image85
    kathleenkatposted 11 years ago

    I don't think money helps them. There are varying reasons why people are homeless, many of which involve financial problems of some sort. Some people became alcoholic, and were unable to keep track of their finances. Some people became unemployed, and had no savings, so could not afford to rent or own a home. Some people have gambling problems, and then became homeless. But for whatever the reason, many homeless people do not have the know-how on managing their financing. That's why I think giving them money is not helpful; they might just go buy alcohol with it.

    I personally give them gift cards to places like McDonald's so they are forced to buy food with them. People need food, not alcohol. If their signs say "hungry" then they definitely don't get cash from me, they get food or gift cards to restaurants.

    1. Catherine Kane profile image84
      Catherine Kaneposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      some of them don't lack know how. One big crisis is all that separates many families from homelessness, and many folks have come back w/ help

  22. Marble Sweets profile image61
    Marble Sweetsposted 11 years ago

    Someone in the social service field once told me " Never give money to panhandlers...there are plenty of services available for the homeless, and they need to go to the nearest agency for that service". Makes sense to me...

    1. John Holden profile image60
      John Holdenposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Sorry, it only makes sense if you've never been homeless or in need.

    2. Catherine Kane profile image84
      Catherine Kaneposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      some of them have mental or emotional problems and lack the savvy to work the system. All of them need to survive, and an agency that's closed til Tues is a long term fix but doesn't feed them now


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