I become more and more disheartened by people as I grow older. We should all feel a moral obligation to one another but seems that isn’t always the case. Many folks pass by an animal that is lost or injured and rush to its aid, but to help a fellow human being who may be hungry or cold seems to be too much to fathom. Where is the compassion and kindness? We are losing our humanity.
I’d like to think that most people are kind and generous. I’d also like to think they would stop and help a fellow human being who is in need. What I hear though, is that most people are convinced that those who are down and out aren’t worthy of help somehow, “because they could get a job” or “they make more money begging.” Folks are just plain suspicious of other folks who need help. I suppose I can see their point of view because frankly, there are some bad apples in the barrel. People who take the easy way, steal from others, cheat the system, etc., ruin things for those who really are in need of assistance. BUT most people who are in need of assistance are genuinely IN NEED OF ASSISTANCE.
Poverty in America is staggering! If you don’t believe me, do a quick Google search and you’ll see. Over 40 million Americans are living under the poverty level. That’s just mind-boggling. Some are college graduates. Some are seniors. Some are disabled. Many are children! With a higher cost of living and minimum wage not even coming close to being a “living wage,” it’s no wonder folks turn to public assistance programs and standing in the cold with signs that read, “Will work for food.” It’s a shame that in this great country we have such poverty.
Anyway, I refuse to lose my humanity. I will still try to see the good in others. I will still try to help someone in need if I can. I can’t judge one person because of another’s actions. I can’t lose sight of the fact that poverty can and does strike anyone, regardless of their education, age, skin color, marital status, health, etc.
What will you do to help others this year? Here are a few things we can all take the time to do to help our fellow humans:
- Volunteer in a soup kitchen, nursing home, or shelter.
- Donate clothing you no longer want or need.
- Donate money to help your own community.
- Donate canned goods to a homeless shelter.
- Donate coats that your children have outgrown to a local school.
- Offer to help an elderly neighbor with groceries or cleaning chores.
- If you knit or crochet, make afghans, scarves, or hats for those less fortunate.
- Cook for someone who may be overwhelmed with grief or stress.
- Donate stuffed animals and other toys to a children’s hospital.
- Do good deeds throughout the day, such as holding the door for someone, let someone step in front of you in line at the store, send someone a handwritten note, compliment people, smile at strangers, be helpful, share your time, teach someone a skill you are proficient at…..
I think you get the idea!