Next week, for the second year running, the GrassGreener Group team will be “sleeping rough” for one night to raise awareness and funds for the Simon on the Streets (SOTS) charity.
But with so many worthwhile charities out there, why have we elected to put our time and efforts into supporting SOTS?
1) There’s a certain stigma around the homeless with a common assumption that the majority are drug addicts or alcoholics and that their problems are, therefore, self-inflicted. Although there’s a certain measure of truth in that thinking, what is often missed is that not everyone turns to drugs or alcohol as a form of recreation, but rather to escape from severe trauma or domestic abuse. Many are also victims of child abuse. To help the homeless is to help some of the most vulnerable and unfortunate people in our community.
2) Drug and alcohol addiction have long been recognised as treatable diseases. They say that everyone deserves a second chance but maybe everyone deserves as many chances as are required to help them seek treatment and begin the road to recovery.
3) The average lifespan for a homeless person is decades below the national average. The truth is that many of the homeless are on “death row” and, for these individuals, charities like SOTS are the only thing standing between their recovery and an early demise.
4) SOTS don’t accept government funding which is why they are free to act independently and work to help those individuals who other charities are unable or unwilling to help. Without the valuable work that SOTS perform, many of these individuals would fall through the cracks and be left with no chance of recovery.
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