Saturday, April 24, 2010

Insights into Lack of Family Support for the Homeless

The Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida somewhat recently published a very interesting post, which I am reproducing in part here. (The image is also reproduced from the Coalition's site.) That post answers one of the questions that frequently comes to mind when one encounters the homeless and/or the hungry: Where are their families? Why don't theny help them? How/why did they end up on the street all alone? Well, read below to see some answers:

"From his own experience, a formerly homeless man named Clyde offers a description of reasons that family reunifications are difficult for the homeless. The words below are taken directly from Clyde’s subjective but insightful blog post:

* Many don’t have parents or any other family to ask for help, even if they wanted to. For some, their parents have passed away, or are in such poor health or financial condition that they can’t help anyone.

* An increasing number of young homeless never had real parents. In some homes, children are treated as just a burden, being fed and housed but little more. Many are physically abused, though verbal abuse can be just as destructive….Thousands of young people run away from these conditions and end up living on the street.

* Many homeless people may have several brothers and sisters, grown-up children, or other relatives, but being family doesn’t mean they will help. They may not be capable of helping due to their own health or financial situation. Some will only grudgingly help a little and make it very clear that it’s an unwelcome burden.

* There are times where the homeless person had been helped by parents but refused to improve their own situation. Sometimes family members may just have to say no, if only for a while, to give the person an incentive to try harder."

The rest of the post, along with other interesting posts and statistics, can be found at the Hope for the Homeless blog maintained by the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida.

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