Today I'd like to share with you Global TV anchorman, Tony Parsons giving his thoughts on homelessness in Vancouver. It's a 2 minute clip.
Mandy Jordan sent me an email detailing what's she's feeling grateful for right now. She says:
"I'm grateful for SO much. I'm grateful that I have the freedom to make art (and the will); that my depression has been kept at bay; that Eric has a job he loves and we have health insurance; that I have good friends all over the world; that I have good friends right here in RI; that I am married to the love of my life; that my parents gave me so much; that I love Eric's family; that our cats are healthy and safe; that our roof doesn't leak; that we live so near the park; that I have the cabin and all the wonders therein; that the world is so fascinating and beautiful..."
Catherine Witherell shared the following:
"I am so grateful that I get to be an artist and that I can use my eyes and my hands to create and manifest the many ideas I have rolling around and sparking in my head. Lately I have been making something I like and turning to my husband and telling him, "Thanks for letting me be an artist." I know he didn't really "let" me, but in a way he did by not balking at what I spend most of my waking time doing. I'm also grateful for him."
I was on a crisis line for 8 1/2 years in my community, which is just outside of Vancouver. Many times I would get callers who were homeless looking for shelters to go to in my city. The heartbreaking thing was that I had nowhere to send them-there are no homeless shelters outside of Vancouver. I can't tell you how difficult it was to have someone needing a safe and warm place to sleep at night and having no way of helping them.
I believe that every community needs to have shelters. Ideally, there would be no need for this, but we all know that we don't live in a perfect world. We have mild winters on the coast for the most part, but from time to time the temperature dips to the point that temporary emergency shelters are set up in area churches. Whenever this happens, it sets off an angry flood of neighbours protesting "not in my back yard!!" I don't know where these people expect the homeless to go. I think they forget that we are all one pay cheque, one illness or accident or natural disaster away from being in the exact same position and that we need to have compassion for one another. We're more connected than we think.
Please join me again tomorrow for day 3 of Gratitude Week.