I am just back from an evening out. I went to Reading to add a helping hand to some of the people from my local bike Club - they being the Thames Vale Motorcycle Group ( The Vultures) - see here - https://www.facebook.com/groups/thamesvalevultures/
It is sad - 2019 and people are still sleeping rough. I felt pretty bad after we had packed up and left these poor people to their "street", and there was I - going home to dinner, with a secure roof over my head.
I am not political, not overly religious and not a radical-anything - but this does upset me. It actually makes little difference who the government is, this story is the same whoever they are and it has been the same through successive governments - left and right.
I think that normal people could help out every now and then where they can. It is easy in so many ways. I doesn't have to cost anything either.
Obviously there are those that will say "Get a job and they won't have to sleep rough" - I guess that is one opinion. Perhaps I can suggest this - if you were an employer - would you take on someone who has no address (because they have no money - and therefore no job with which to get themselves some sort of address)? If I were an employer it would certainly make me think twice or three times about should I be offering them a job in my business.
There seems to be an unanswerable quandry there. A catch-22.
In a very short time with these peole (there wever about 50 of them and food does not last forever) - you realise that many of them really are very intelligent - and make no mistake - all of them - no exception - were very polite and grateful.
The Vultures are a *very* small club with not a lot of members - and the hat goes round every month at our meetings. A lot of time and effort is spent helping others with very little money. Club funds are spent on this sort of thing - which I think is wonderful - although it is a shame that it has to happen.
On the first Sunday of each month, members of the club feed these homeless people in Reading. We did so today (see the picture below) - the summer menu basically being hot dogs and cold drinks. In the winter we provide hot soup.
Pet food is also available for the dogs that are so often their companions. Also clothing is supplied where needed, and pop-up single tents, sleeping bags and bedrolls to keep them off the ground.
I will go back again next month - because it costs me nothing to help - and because I have some old t-shirts etc. I can take hotdogs, bread rolls, and of course my time and a pair of hands.
If someone I know is fed up with camping and wants to throw out their sleeping bag, their bed-roll or some old warm clothes, let me know!
There is a just-giving page if you fancy lobbing a fiver over the fence.
I am however a lousy fund-raiser and will not chase people for money.
I feel a bit better now.