A couple of weeks ago, it rained really hard. Like really, really hard. I know coming from a Californian, that doesn’t mean very much, but I assure you that that those couple of days saw more rain than the rest of 2020 combined.
So what, Aminah? Why’s the rain so special???
I thought you’d never ask! The rain was so special, precisely because I WAS NOT IN IT.
Want to know where I was?
Do you really?
I was snuggled under a thick blanket in my nice, warm bed, listening to the rain from inside the safety of my home. I assure you that the moment was very wholesome.
All of this snuggling and listening and raining got me thinking…what do people experiencing homelessness do when it rains? They don’t exactly have anywhere to go, and rain isn’t cute to listen to when you’re stuck in it.
I was never more aware of how privileged and lucky I am until that very moment.
You see, the danger for those who live on the streets is not only in getting wet, but also in getting cold. These individuals must stand in doorways, huddle under waterproof tarps, or make a dash for their nearest shelter (if there is one) in order to protect themselves, and their layers often aren’t enough. Many people struggling with homelessness are particularly vulnerable to catching illnesses such as pneumonia, tuberculosis, trench foot, or aggravating preexisting conditions such as asthma.
Laying there in my bed, I realized that I had to do something about this inequality. I had tons of good clothes lying around my house that were no longer of use, clothes that would better serve someone else.
So, after waiting a couple days for the rain to pass, I gathered all of the scarves, blankets, shirts, jeans, shoes, jackets, and hats my family no longer needed and organized them into bags for donation.
Why am I telling you this whole experience? Because I want you to donate to those currently experiencing homelessness.
I’m sure you can find at least one item in your home that would better be used by someone else. And it doesn’t have to be clothes (though, fun(ish) fact: socks are one of the most needed and least donated items), it can be canned goods, masks for goodness’ sake, even toys.
“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” — Theodore Roosevelt
Don’t be like I was…don’t lay in your bed, listening to the rain pitter-pattering against your window, doing absolutely nothing. After reading this article, you must do something. You must.
One Last Thing–
I sincerely hope you got value out of this article! For more, check out the other articles my medium page. Have more questions or thoughts? Let’s connect on LinkedIn!