Bring some lives, to light.

As I sit here comfortably in my kitchen drinking my hot coffee, using my computer, and stare lovingly at my winters best friend, the wood stove, I cannot help but wonder about those on the streets. It is a horrible morning at six o'clock. The trees are complaining about gusts of winds that strip them of foliage and send them tumbling down to the rain soaked earth. Waves hitting the beach with a constant undeniable truth in character. And then the thought strikes me: there are people living outside in this weather. Not of their own choice specifically, but that of a cruel and unusual human condition called emotions. Mental health is a leading cause of homelessness, and by close association, addictions. According to online information there are roughly three hundred people in the valley that are considered homeless. For more information visit the Comox Valley Transition Society, and download their PDF survey.

http://www.cvts.ca/assets/templates/cvts_main/files/HH_survey.pdf

The information contained in this document is truly but a fraction of what is really happening amongst those that live out of doorways, on the streets, or under tarps in urban wooded areas.

Having spent four months in my van with my wife and two dogs due to affordable housing shortages, or rental owners unwilling, to allow affordable housing to people with dogs, I can honestly say that living a life time of homelessness is not something I care to endure. It is with this deep concern for those on the streets that I wish to bring this topic to the forefront of conversation. In this day and age, with all the money floating around doing nothing constructive but earning more money for those that do no need it, homeless programs should be fat with support. Instead, we have a shortage of beds, a shortage of helpers, and an overwhelming need for assistance. If you have something to contribute, contact Dawn to Dawn http://dawntodawn.org/ to donate.

If nothing else, bring some awareness with you the next time you see a person diving for recycling, or sitting in the doorway. Bring with you the understanding that these people are not necessarily in control of their destiny due to some form of mental health issue. Bring with you compassion that says to these people that even though you cannot understand or truly appreciate what it is that they experience on a day to day basis, you can at least understand what it is to feel helpless, and leave your judgments behind. Find it in your heart to lend a helping hand, and not a leering glance. Quite simply, the homeless of the Comox Valley, and elsewhere for that matter just want to be happy, just like you and I.