Showing care to the homeless – Coats, Care Packs and Compassion
Our Coats for the Homeless program not only delivers warm coats, socks and care packs to those sleeping-rough, but it also is an opportunity for our volunteers to connect and show care for some of the most marginalised in our society.
Every interaction our distribution teams have with the homeless is unique and so are the stories they share of how they find themselves alone and without shelter. Just before yesterday’s snap lockdown in Melbourne, our volunteers met Chris* who was happy to share his experiences.
As a young man, Chris had been diagnosed as having ADHD and then become addicted to ice/crystal meth which had spiralled out of control and ended in a short prison sentence. He had been released a week earlier and was focused on staying out of trouble. The boarding house where he was able to secure temporary accommodation on release had not suited him because drugs were readily available, and he wanted no part in them. He told our volunteers how he missed his dogs that were currently in a boarding kennel in the country, and he was focused on rebuilding his life and getting back with his animals.
Chris appreciated the time our volunteers shared and the warm coat they provided him as he did not have any waterproof gear or sleeping bag. The care pack was also gratefully received.
As our distribution teams said goodbye and told to him that they hoped their paths would cross again soon, he responded with a genuine heart-warming smile, “I hope not. At least not under these circumstances.”
*Name changed and identity concealed