I am part of a group of church members in Grass Valley that feed the homeless in Nevada City. I have been feeding and providing necessities to the homeless for three years, as I could no longer look the other way.
As I feed these homeless individuals, I feel enormous compassion for them. Imagine waking up or going to sleep with an empty stomach and spending the night in the woods or in your car. Sometimes the weather is brutal and you are very cold or wet from the rain. Also, you need a bathroom to wash up and take care of your personal needs.
As you search for these needs, people stare at you with disgust. You become tired, and have feelings of hopelessness as you walk the streets. Business owners tell you to get away from the front of their establishment, and law enforcement personnel tell you to move on.
At nighttime you search for someplace to rest your weary body and sleep, hoping you are not harassed. Your mind reminds you that tomorrow you will repeat this life of survival.
The homeless are human beings with basic needs, like ourselves. They have enough hardships to deal with already without being disrespected for their situation. Most are doing the best they can. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away. Only by working together as a community can we find solutions.