We still have a long way to go.
Whenever we talk about the poor, the homeless people, we said that they are vulnerable and MARGINALISED. But do you know who marginalised them?
When we see people living on the streets, thoughts start to build in us. “Oh they need help. They are vulnerable and depending on us to survive. They take from us to live for another day.”
These thoughts, even though just thoughts, are alarming and telling stories of how discriminative we are. It’s subconscious. That’s how you start making social rules to EXCLUDE people in a current or past deprivation. The current discriminative policies were constructed in your little human brains too.
If the people don’t start to understand WHY people are living on the streets, and we keep thinking we are saviours, we are the privileged ones, nothing will ever change.
You might think I rant for no particular reason.
So I was about to organise an event for the community and it will involve professionals and students from a private college. The objective is to get everyone together, just to encourage human interactions and create awareness about homelessness in this city.
While finalising the booking for the recreational space for the event, the officer in-charged as usual, asked great questions.
Officer: “So, there are already around 10 homeless people who take shower here everyday. After your event, will the other xx (number) homeless people come here and take shower as well?”
I wasn’t there when this was asked but my friend came back to me with this question.
Me: “Oh I can’t promise or make decisions on behalf of the community. But is the shower station there for free? It’s a public toilet right?”
So, why are you even afraid that the community members will use the facility? Isn’t it for everyone?
We still haven’t talked about wealth distribution. This is a public space that is open for all. Yet there is no freedom for a homeless man to use a service that he deserves?
We don’t achieve much when we are givers. IMHO, when we share what we have on our plates, that’s when we can make a more lasting impact.