Winter is coming and the lucky ones find a place to rest with a roof over their heads. Not the kind of roof we enjoy but a bus shelter roof or the awning over a closed shop. Yes, they are lucky.
The unlucky ones can only stare up at the sky. They huddle under a tree. Their days and nights are even longer and colder. They are forever fearful their meagre belongings will be stolen.
And if weren’t bad enough, many of them don’t eat well. They can’t afford good food and rely on wonderful people like you to donate to our Winter Appeal.
I don’t know what is sadder: Empty hearts or empty stomachs…
But there is something you can do this Winter. By providing a gift of any amount it allows us to buy the necessary items to provide a bag full of easy to prepare meals for those living in such conditions.
How do people get to be in this situation? Could you or I end up like this? Perhaps…
Talking with many of our clients who come to us for a bit of food and some company we find they tend to come from two different back grounds.
Some have a university degree and once held down a good job, but circumstances have led to unemployment, break up of family and finally desperation. Mental health creeps in and then finding a job with no address, poor physical and mental health makes them unemployable. They retreat into themselves and become isolated from what we consider a normal lifestyle.
The other group have grown up with a dysfunctional family. Income is dependent on government benefits, charity and maybe theft. They come from families that have never worked and they have experienced generational poverty.
And we must not ignore the fact that many people who live on the street have drug and alcohol problems.
It is easy to consider this lifestyle as merely poor life choices, but thankfully you do not. And this has been shown many times by your generosity because homeless people are who you help, through us.
I know you care because you’ve given before. Your generosity has already made a difference...
Your giving spirit is part of what it means to live here in our community.
We look out for each other. It is the Canberra way.
And of course, we help so many other people at this time of the year. Not just people living on the street. A growing number of our clients are overwhelmed, never having imagined that they would need to ask for help.
Everyone seems to be feeling the economic pinch and your generous support in the past has meant that we have been able to assist many and, for a growing number, help to prevent homelessness, ensure that there is a meal to eat, and that heating is not cut off.
The social and economic impact of COVID coupled with today’s economic climate are causing more and more people to seek assistance from SJC.
When you donate to our Winter Appeal you save lives. You make life better (and longer) for homeless people. Through us you help to build a little bit of dignity and give them a reason to face their tomorrow.
I can assure you that we at St John’s Care are totally focused on putting your generosity to work in the best way possible.
Please send your gift now. We have clients who need a hero like you right now. You’ll feel good about the difference you make.
P.S. I hope you can renew your support for our Winter Appeal. Your caring kindness is a big part of what makes our community a great place to live!