The Invisible People - Would You Notice If One Of Your Relatives Was Homeless?

When I first saw this video, I wanted to scream, "THIS!! THIS!! THIS IS WHAT I'VE BEEN TRYING TO TELL PEOPLE FOR THE PAST FIVE YEARS!!"

Have you seen it yet? It's the brain child of New York City Rescue Mission (more information can be found at http://www.makethemvisible.com ) and it drives home the message I've been trying to get people to understand in every post of this blog. These are human beings. They like music, they dreamed of being ballerinas when they were little girls. The homeless people you ignore on the street every day are somebody's brother, somebody's mother, someone's cousin, daughter, childhood best friend. What if that homeless person sitting on the street - yeah, that one you uncomfortably looked away from as you side step their outstretched legs - was one of your relatives?

Please, please. Watch this video. Share this video. Notice the people around you - really see them and acknowledge them with kindness! Being treated day after day after day as if you're invisible in a city of millions of people is a terrible thing and no one deserves to feel that way.

Help make them visible. Donate to a good cause. Buy a person living on the streets a cup of coffee. Stop a moment and say, "how are you?" and then listen to the answer. You have no idea how much joy you bring to a homeless person's day just by acknowledging his or her existence with a kind word.

Be the change, my friends... one person at a time.

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  • I have so much respect for y'all at nonprofits trying desperately to convince people to care for others, fighting the "me-first, screw-everybody-else" mentality that has arisen from the consumer economic culture we've had for the past 60 years. It's hard to even score a comment about caring for others, isn't it? You fight the good fight.

  • In response to your question, I would most certainly notice, but if the situation were reversed and I had to wait for a relative or neighbor to notice me, I fear the answer would be a resounding no. Many of my friends do not understand why I am willing to stand outside for hours in miserable weather to hawk grocery donations for the food pantry. And even though my family is not well off financially, I am more likely to donate things, gently used clothing and household goods, rather than trying to sell them on Craig's List, Ebay, or a garage sale. The whole dynamic of homelessness is tough, because each case is a unique story, a unique circumstance. The tendency for those how have a home is to assume that those who do not are somehow to blame for their situation, and while that might be true in some cases, it certainly doesn't apply to all. To label all homeless as lacking in motivation is inappropriate at the very least, and to feel superior to them, the worst. "But for the Grace of God, there go I."

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