No, it’s not a Holiday, nor is it a vacation break. In 2007, Congress established November as the National Homeless Youth Awareness Month. Check out the official National Homelessness Awareness – Senate Resolution and National Homelessness Awareness – House Resolution, for more details.
Some interesting tidbits from both documents include:
(1) An estimated 1,300,000 to 2,800,000 youths in the
United States are homeless for at least one night each
year, with many staying on the streets or in emergency
(2) An average of 13 homeless youth die each day due
to physical assault, illness, or suicide
(3) 25 percent of foster youth experienced homelessness
within 2 to 4 years after exiting foster care
(4) Families with children are the fastest growing segment
of the homeless population and now make up approximately
1⁄3 of that population
Those numbers alone are astounding. How could this happen to us? You would think that with time, homelessness would have been addressed and those numbers (from 2007) would decrease by now. This ‘invisible’ issue of homelessness must be addressed, and hence, the need for a National Awareness Month.
With November the time to give thanks to everything we are grateful for (our families, education, jobs, food, clothes, shelter, friends, all our blessings), it seems appropriate that Congress ascribed November to be the National Homeless Awareness Month.
We need to be thankful for what we have because there are those less fortunate who would LOVE to have the chance to be fed ONE dinner and have the opportunity to sleep in a BED for one night.
To honor November as National Homeless Awareness Month, I wanted to increase awareness of HOMELESSNESS. In Southern California, thousands of people live on the street, but are often unnoticed by city-goers. Homelessness is a reality for those on the streets, and with the coming of the Winter Season, it is even worse for them. While everyone else is eating a Thanksgiving dinner with their loved ones or spending time going Christmas shopping/Black Friday shopping for the latest technological innovations (the new iPhone, iPad, the newest MacBook with the Retina Display, a new pair of V-neck sweaters or Levi jeans, and the list goes on) , there are people fighting to stay alive… and make it through one more day of no food, no shelter, no bed, and worst of all, no one to help them out of their bleak situation.
I wanted to share an article that really articulates this message. Please check it out here.