I’m no Stephanie (yarnharlot) or Davalyn,(davalynnspencer) or Rachael (yarnagogo.com) or any of the thousands of women who do thousands of good things in the world. The best I do on a daily is is to let someone with just a few items, a crying baby or someone who is obviously in a rush go ahead of me at the market. I am not in a hurry and even ten minutes isn’t going to mess up my day. Plus, that simple act makes the checkers thing I’m neat and the person who went ahead of me think “WOW! She’s nice!” as they hurry out to their car and into their day.
When I clean out my closet, I usually send the items to the local Mental health center because even at best, they are struggling. The money they get from social security or where ever is barely enough to keep a roof over their head and three meals in their bellies.
But I saw something the other day, before Christmas, that just tore my heart out. A young mother with two preschool children were digging thru the trash looking for food and something to wear and probably cans and bottles to turn in for cash. The kids, about 4 and 5, wear wearing a half dozen t-shirts, a pair of raggedy pant and flip flops. In the rain. Mom was not ressed even warmly as the two boys. They had that white skin that is so pale it is almost the color of skim milk. And they were looking for food in the dumpsters.
AS in the story about the little girl who is throwing starfish on the beach back into the water and is told that she can’t possibly save they all, replies “But the ones I do save will sure be happy!” echoed in my head, I went upstairs and filled an apple box with mis-matched socks, t-shirts and sweatshirts that none of us ever use. By the time I got downstairs, the little family was gone but I still had an apple box with things someone could use. I wrote “Free. Take what you need. Leave some for others” on a piece of cardboard and leaving the box, went back upstairs. I opened the bathroom window a couple of times, just to check that some ranging bunch of ravers hadn’t turned my box upside down and tossed the clothing all over the wet alley. They hadn’t.
So I wrote a little note on Facebook, on the pages I know people who are from from my little town, telling my story and asking for help.
You can read the story here. That was published two days ago. 109 boxes have been dropped off in all, so far. boxes of blankets and shirts. jackets and socks. Towels, sleeping bags and tampons. It has been a huge outpouring of love for the families and individuals who have just fallen through the cracks of the system. I’m educated and have my own computer. I spent an HOUR trying to find a shelter in town and all I got was ERROR Page not found, Imagine if I were homeless with two small children, using the library computer. How much help would knowing for sure that there are shelters and places to go for free meals do me if I couldn’t locate the information?
38% of the homeless are children. Many of the men left their families, thinking that they would do better without them draining their finances. Once that money was gone, the children and mothers are homeless, too. I know there are shelters and free meals available right here in my town, but if I can;t find them with all of the opportunities I have how can anyone else find them?
If you live in Hanford, please give the things you don;t need to my little Angel box. It is located in the alley between 6th and 7th, across the street from Huggy’s on Douty,right behind the big brick building, There is a green metal grill right there for you to put your things. The alley runs right behind the theater downtown.
If you live elsewhere, think about a place in town that you can make into an Angel Box. It doesn’t have to be huge. You aren’t running a charity. You are just part of a grass roots movement of helping other people who were living paycheck to paycheck, just like most of us do.
I’m no one special. I just saw a need and tried to stick my finger in the leak. You can do the very same thing.