1. Homeless People are People

Not long ago, I had the opportunity to talk with a neighbor who’s son has been experiencing homelessness for years. She said something that really stuck out to me. She told me that one of his favorite things to do is get together with his friends and play board games. I was surprised. I had never thought about the almost obvious fact that homeless people might also enjoy playing board games. They have hobbies too. 

I had some repenting to do. 

So I went downtown. I talked to people experiencing homelessness. I didn’t ask them what had got them there. I didn’t wonder what kinds of addictions or mental health issues they might have. I simply asked them about themselves. I asked where they’re from, what they do for fun, what is important to them, what hidden talents they might have, what their favorite color is, and their favorite thing to eat.

People were hesitant at first. It probably isn’t a regular occurrence that they get asked about these things. And that’s kind of a shame. But when they did open up, we talked and I made new friends. 

This was a reminder to me that we’re all in this together. We’re all humans, and carry the same inherent value regardless of our current situations.

Some friends and I took images of the people that we were lucky enough to meet, and made these posters to hang up around town. They aren’t political and they don’t push any agenda. I only hope that they stand as a reminder that…

Homeless people are people.