by Dr. Chad Audi
If you were to win money in the lottery, would you give it away to a homeless person? Tough question, right? Well, a woman in Massachusetts did just that. The single mother of three gave her $200 in lottery winnings to a man on the street whose plight touched her heart.
The homeless man was desperately trying to keep warm in the 8-below zero temperatures, and the woman used her lottery money to put him up at a motel for three nights. “I knew why God had blessed me with the winnings,” she said.
And the woman didn’t stop there. She created a GoFundMe page for the man, and raised more than $5,000 to help the man get back on his feet.
While this is a remarkable story of selfless giving, we know that the homeless need more than money. They need direction, restorative services, job training, affordable housing, and help integrating back into society. These are the types of services that non-profit agencies like ours, Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries (DRMM), provide for thousands of homeless and low-income individuals and families.
We hope that the money raised for the Massachusetts man will be responsibly managed and that he will be directed to an appropriate agency that will guide him through the steps of putting his life back together.
Sure, giving makes us feel good. We are equipped with the human instinct to try to help the homeless and disadvantaged. But at the same time, we need to make sure that the help we provide is long term and effective.
Dr. Chad Audi
By Dr. Chad Audi
October 10, 2010 was a special day on the calendar because it denoted the one time that we can refer to: 10/10/10. There was much fanfare and media coverage about the date, as thousands of couples got married on what is believed to be a lucky day.
But there was something else happening on 10/10/10 that you probably didn’t hear much about. It marked the first World Homeless Day. The purpose is to draw attention to the needs of homeless people in your community and find ways to get involved and help.
The homeless numbers around the country are staggering: On any given night, there are an estimated 3.5 million homeless people in the U.S. And that number continues to rise as a result of an economic recession, job layoffs and home foreclosures.
The organizers behind World Homeless Day encouraged everyone to support local charities that help the homeless and to partner with schools, churches, service clubs, news outlets, and businesses to brainstorm ideas for fundraising and awareness projects. On the global front, organizers are offering to share great ideas with other countries in a collective effort to help the homeless.
It’s great to have an international day to focus attention on homelessness. But we need to be in a “World Homeless Day” frame of mind every day. Not just on the 10th day of the 10th month of the year. We live it every day here at the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries (DRMM), where thousands of men, women and children seek shelter. Ask yourself, how are you making a difference in the lives of the homeless?