Last night (05/03/17) I went along to the Soup Kitchen in Chatham which is run by Liz and Darren of http://www.obfhelpingthehomeless.webs.com @onebigfamilyHTH and saw at first hand the great work they do along with their fantastic volunteers.
It was a cold and wet evening, though quite mild and there must’ve been about 30-35 homeless people accepting the hot food, drinks, clothes and toiletries that were at their disposal.
It was extremely humbling and eye opening to witness this, a weekly event, literally on my doorstep and I was amazed to find that this was classed as a quiet evening.
The sense of community spirit that was on display really warms the heart, and it’s a shame that this kind of event is left to volunteers to organise and run, while councils have their electronic display overlooking proceedings, boasting about the government money that will help to regenerate Chatham town centre.
Money would be better spent on facilities to help regenerate these people. It’s all well and good offering places of refuge when they need to implement the SWEP – Severe weather emergency protocol, but this day and age we shouldn’t have a homeless problem in this world.
Even if vacant offices, shops etc can be used for the evenings, so they have somewhere warm to get some decent rest, and they need to vacate by a certain time in the morning, would be a start.
We live in the real world, we know the problem won’t be eradicated overnight, but if little measures are put in place day by day, week by week, they will begin to make it an easier experience for all involved.