19
Feb
09

192. Invisible Faces

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Homelessness is a problem that people don’t come in contact with on a daily basis. It tends to not get the publicity that a major disaster would get.

Phil Frame

Homelessness in America isn’t a topic that is widely publicized.  When you look at the mainstream media, homelessness certainly doesn’t get top billing like the news of our political foibles or the latest tabloid tales of celebrities. I’ve often thought  that homelessness is treated as a dirty little secret that  is hidden from most Americans. I think we hide homelessness  due to the fact that there is too little  being done to solve this problem.. The issue of homelessness just isn’t a “feel good” topic. Admittedly, there are many thousands of homeless citizens who will tell you that there isn’t much to feel good about when you face life without a home . Despite our best efforts to make our homeless citizens invisible to the public at large, they are out there in each and every community in our country.

Just last week a colleague of mine was sharing that her church had taken it upon themselves to provide one meal a week to the rising homeless population within their small ,rural county. She mentioned that few people realized that there was such an urgent need to provide for those without food & shelter. Sadly,like many communities in America the homeless often become invisible to the mainstream due to a lack of public knowledge about the urgency of this situation.  Once my colleague had shared the needs of feeding the homeless, there was an out pouring of assistance with this project. People were determined that noone who needed a meal would would be turned away while under the charity of this church. Once the secret of homelessness is brought to the attention of the mainstream amazing things can happen. Imagine the results if there were a national campaign that provided education to the public and suggested ways for communities to assist those without a place to call home?

I’ve heard many people share that they rarely think about homelessness in America. This isn’t surprising given that many of our homeless citizens live in rural areas of America and seldom cross paths with these folks. Then there are people in our urban cities who witness the homeless daily ,yet choose not to engage with these people of the urban landscapes. All too often people detach themselves from the homeless as they feel no connection to their situation. Stereotypes about the homeless abound. Homelessness is full of invisible people that noone seems to actually stop and see. At this point I could provide even more statistics on the homeless in America but I have a different idea….how about meeting some of our homeless Americans.

Invisible People is a vlog that shares videos of homeless Americans. The people interviewed share ther stories about being homeless and give a real dose about the topic of homelessness in America.The purpose of Invisible People is stated as:

The purpose of this vlog is to make the invisible visible. I hope these people and their stories connect with you and don’t let go. I hope their conversations with me will start a conversation in your circle of friends……
The invisible guy didn’t intend to become homeless. I didn’t plan on living on the street. Everyone on the streets has their own story, some made bad decisions, others were victims, but none of them deserve what they have been left with, and it is a reflection of our own society that we just leave them there.

Please always remember, the homeless people you’ll ignore today were much like you not so long ago.

I hope you will go take a look at this wonderful site that does so much to promote the topic of homelessnes and offers a glimpse into the reality of being homelessness in America. Hopefully ,it will make you mad enough to do something for the homeless in your communities…at the very least you might not see the homeless as invisible any longer.

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