To the editor,
I write this letter to all the citizens and leaders of our community. Winter is here and many are out there with no roof over their head, no warm cozy bed, no place to call home. Some of them addicted, some with mental health issues, some just lost. They need us the citizens and leaders of our community to stop Band-Aiding the situation.
During spring, summer and autumn, when weather is fine, life goes on, but winter comes and we remember there are some out there with nothing but their community of homeless people. Some of us give to the kettles, to the food banks, to the coat drives to make us feel we’ve done our part. Some of us don’t give because we are tired of the needles found lying around, tired of the wet coats and blankets and other things left behind because they are unable to be dried and now useless, tired of the thefts and vandalism. We are tired of the Band-Aid that always falls off. We are angry at the homeless for not participating in our community, we are angry at our leaders for allowing the situation to get worse and worse.
Some of us pray. I pray for us as a community to build a facility for these people who need a home, who need a safe place to heal and become a part of the larger community. We have hospitals for the sick, nursing homes for the old, hospices for the dying. Why can a community not be built for the homeless – when that day comes I believe more people will open their hearts to give, to share their gifts of living and together we will be giving the true gift of hope to those who need it rather than enabling people to live a life that is doing them or the community no good. May the new year bring changes.
MaryLou Sharpe, Nanaimo
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