The Daily Post’s daily prompt: Breaking the Ice and here’s their idea:
The internet has recently been swept up by the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Is there a cause — social, political, cultural, or other — you passionately believe in? Tell us how you got involved — or why you don’t get involved.
Wanting to help others is part of why we were created. We are supposed to give to the poor, feed the hungry, and give shelter to the homeless. However. I will never give money again to a homeless person. I did once, since he begged for food. “Just a dollar. Anything you can give. I just wanna eat.” I was putting gas in my car and in order to get him to stop spitting on my windshield and wiping it “clean” with his shirt sleeve, I gave him $5. There was a fast food chain right next to the gas station. Did he go get a burger? No. He watched me watch him go into the gas station and buy a pack of smokes.
Now while I realize not all homeless people do this, it nipped my giving money to them in the bud. I have given food to homeless people. They did not say thank you (not that they really had to), nor did they seem happy to be fed, so I’m 95% positive they only want money. I am sure many of them want the money to eat, but I wonder what percentage are actually homeless. I’m talking about those standing at the intersections holding the sign that says ‘Please give money. Hungry. God bless.’ Many have been followed and watched as they gave the money to someone else in their group. They go buy smokes, alcohol, drugs. It hurts it for the honest ones who really do need the money to buy food.
With that said, I will only donate money to the shelters (once bitten, twice shy), to the local food pantries and to those charitable organizations I feel passionate about. I’m passionate about helping the poor but only through the food kitchens, so I buy food for those places, I serve with my time, along with my mother and daughter. Even our Girl Scout troop has served and raised food donations and money for our local soup kitchen.
I’m also a huge animal fan. We’ve given monetary and food donations to animal shelters, blankets, food & water bowls and we’ve served with our time. We have a rescue dog and he’s the best dog we’ve ever had (shhhh! Don’t tell the others.) We’ve actually had several rescue dogs and rescue cats and we’ve rescued wild animals that were hurt or nearly killed.
We have participated in walks and raising money for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure (I have friends with or who have survived breast cancer and some did not.) I participated in walks and raising money for the American Diabetes Association (my grandpa had diabetes and I have friends that suffer with it.) I’ve walked and raised money for the American Heart Association, March of Dimes, as well as a handful of other causes. We love to help out the Angel Trees, Toys for Tots and give to battered women’s shelters, children’s homes and many organizations that help abused, neglected and hungry children. And then there’s St. Jude, the Make a Wish Foundation, our local Ronald McDonald House, Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital and on and on.
The point I want to make here is find a cause or causes you believe in. There are so many that we support. I wish I had enough money and time to give to many more, because there are a great many I believe in. If you don’t have the money to donate to these causes, that’s fine. Sometimes (much of the time) we don’t have money to give. Try to make some time to gather belongings you don’t need/use anymore and donate them to the Salvation Army, women’s shelters, children’s homes. Call up your local food pantry or soup kitchen or a hundred other organizations and charities in your own neighborhood that could use an extra pair of hands and offer your help for an hour or two. Better yet, get your whole family involved. Take your Girl Scout troop, a group of friends from work, etc. You’ll be amazed at how great you feel afterwards when you help someone else. Find a way to serve. If you have the will, there’s always a way.