Homelessness is a multifactorial plague of our lives and there are no easy solutions. There is no monolithic definition of “homeless” in Chicago, as homelessness ranges from very transient states of homelessness to long term homelessness, or may just refer to less than hospitable living conditions. According to allchicago.org, a non-profit working to eliminate homelessness, most homeless people are:
• Veterans, including those experiencing post-traumatic stress disorders;
• People affected by severe mental or physical health or chronic substance use;
• Households fleeing domestic violence;
• Ex-offenders or people released from institutions with no place to go;
• Youths thrown out of their houses because they are lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender, pregnant, or survivors of abuse;
• Immigrants and undocumented individuals who have difficulty securing work or housing because of lack of documentation, language and/or cultural barriers.
Each night in Chicago close to 6,200 people – women, children, teenagers – wander the streets with nowhere to sleep. Homelessness in Chicago only gets worse during the Chicago winters as temperature drop below 0 F from December to March.
While we might not be able to provide homes or end homelessness in the city we can make it more bearable. Our goal this winter is simple: “help keep someone warm”.
Working with agencies across the city providing services to the homeless, we hope to deliver socks, coats, gloves, shoes and thermals to homeless children, mothers and the elderly across the city from the 14th of November to the 10th of December.
We invite you to support us any way you can by simply:
a) Dropping off supplies at a drop box near you.
b) “Hosting” or “sponsoring” a supply drop box on your department or office floor
c) Assisting with delivery of supplies to homelessness servicing agencies across the city.