Do you prefer photographs, original art, bare walls or?
We have all heard phrases such as "you are what you eat", "dress for success" and many similar phrases. Some say some of us are defined by the car we drive.
What can be learned by what we hang on our walls?
There are some surprising pieces of information that can be discovered by observing what somebody wears, what they eat, what they drive or what they hang on their walls. Especially if one reads between the lines.
The number of people who have no home and no walls to hang anything is on the rise every day. 2007 the numbers of homeless on the streets has increased at a rate not seen since the great depression.
Many people think of homeless people as drug addicts, alcoholics, people with mental problems or people that are just too lazy to work. That is true. It is the same for people who are not homeless. There are people who are just too lazy to work, alcoholics, drug abusers, hookers, thieves, people with illness etc.
Looking at many homeless people one might make some very incorrect assumptions when they see somebody who is dirty in tattered clothes with unkempt hair. A smile is all too rare, there is little shine in their eyes and the lack of energy could be a result of too many hours since their last meal.
If you spend a few weeks on the street your friends might not recognize you.
Homelessness does not discriminate. There are families, women, children and people who were in productive jobs who had homes and lives.
Los Angeles has the highest homeless in the nation.
It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. In the slide show below are a few pictures. Try to remember than most of the people in these photographs were productive people with lives like many of you in their past. In many cases their past was less than a year ago.
I have a number of pieces on the homeless which can be seen from this link if you wish to learn more:
The homeless situation is not improving in Los Angeles or in other cities in the country. It is getting worse due to many factors such as the economy.
Union Rescue Mission in Los Angeles California is the largest mission in Los Angeles. I cannot begin to cover what they do, their programs and their reputation. If you do a bit of checking on charities you will find them in the top tier with the highest ratings. They know how to stretch every dollar they receive. They can feed a family of five for less than $10.
Perhaps as you sit in your office today while on a break, looking at the art on your own walls, take a moment to hit the link here - http://www.urm.org/ where you can learn a lot more about what these folks do and learn more about the homeless. URM needs your help. The current economic climate has struck them as it has everybody else.
Donations are down and required services are up. The number of families seeking help at Union Rescue Mission has risen 131% since 2008. The number if individuals seeking shelter has doubled.
I will quote a few lines from Andy Bales, the CEO of Union Rescue Mission: Over the past three years, we've watched Los Angeles implode. Growing evictions, rising foreclosures, devastating job losses. Many say it is the biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression.
Worse, the unemployment rate is not going down, the number of men and women who have given up is rising. I expect another surge of families seeking our help.
Union Rescue Mission is running out of space - and out of money. Due to huge cuts in county funding and flat donations we are a staggering $1.4 million short of meeting our budget this summer. Every summer donation falls up to 50%. We have done everything we can to cut costs. We have cut wages across the board twice. We have cut employee benefits and positions. We have cut $2.5 million from our budget. It is not enough.
There are may ways you can help. You can go to the URM website and click on the Donate tab. There are many options, even Pay-Pal. If you are reading this on your smart phone while sitting at a Starbucks you can feed five people in less than 30 seconds as you drink your coffee. A simple text message will change the day for five people.
Donate $10 to Union Rescue Mission. Text the letters URM to 85944. You will receive a confirmation text message. Reply with the word YES to complete the transaction.
Your donation is tax deductible. Union Rescue Mission can not do this without help from people like you.