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Friday, March 25, 2011

don't bite the hand that feeds you

There was a very nice article in the Sunday paper about the local homeless shelter.  it is the same one where the boy and i donated canned goods at christmastime.  the article talked about the director of the shelter, a no-nonsense woman, and the shelter's services.  several families, in addition to living quarters for single residents, may live at the shelter, and back in the (children and youth) day, i used to get food for my families there too.  C was always generous in providing goodies, gave me advice to pass on to my families on how to best utilize what she sent, and also warned me when families "double dipped" (that was rare, but it did happen once).

C is tough, but she has a heart.  if you're unemployed, she expects you to look for and secure employment, no matter the hours or minimal pay.  the shelter has a substantial vegetable garden, and staff and residents put up canned goods of produce that is not consumed immediately.  she uses the "teach a man to fish and you teach a man to live" philosophy as a way she runs the shelter.

some residents apparently find this philosophy difficult to live with.  one resident expressed frustration that "she nor the staff help residents find jobs or services.  there's no bulletin board with information.  they expect us to do the work ourselves."  another resident echoed his frustration.  

those comments soiled an otherwise lovely article.  these people made me angry, quite honestly.  C and her staff are gracious enough to accommodate you.  what makes you so damn special that you can't find a job, apply for benefits or find your own housing by yourself?  sadly, this seems to be the attitude of a lot of people as of late - no one wants to do their own work, and they expect others to do their work for them.  

i'm grateful that our community has a homeless shelter and the ability to help so many people.  it is a charity that i support.  i'm glad that there are still people out there who believe in pulling yourself up by your boot straps.  i hope that trend doesn't go away.

as always, the daily item doesn't have the article listed on their website.  if you have access, the article was featured in the sunday march 20 2011 issue.

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