Today I was involved in the Mates Helping Mates BBQ for the homeless at Musgrave Park in Brisbane. The idea for the event came from homeless man, Grant Richards, also known as The Polite Guy and Big Issue Vendor.
After putting up marquees, sorting through thousands of items of clothing and firing up the BBQ’s, I sat down and spoke to may of the people who turned out to receive a helping hand from the many wanting to lend a hand.
I met many characters, the two most memorable, Chris and Mark. Mark was a 51 year old firecracker who had a sense of humour like no other. He spoke about the hardships of life, but made jokes about the most ordinary things. He changed the way I view little things we dont notice normally. Like teabags and broken shoes. Under all the stories and jokes, there was this heart the size of an elephant. He cared about things, but just needed the time to get himself into the place he could start it all again.
Chris had it together. He was the ‘role model’ for the other men that are in the Mens House they all live in together.
Through a number of the people I met, there was also a number of people, who are homeless through their own choices, such as smoking weed, or drinking too much.
You cant judge the homeless, or put them into one category. They are all different with unique stories, but are all aware that it is their choices that is the reason where they are. That was the most uplifting experience for me. To learnt that they didnt blame the world, or the government or anyone for their problems. They own who they are and their situation. For people with barely anything, they do more for themselves then people I know who have everything.
Blaming someone else is never the answer. Sitting there resenting someone who has hurt you, is only effecting you. They dont care, so the only person your anger tears and blame are effecting is you.
Look around you. Look at things you own, and then think about all the things that are on your list of want to buy. The latest heels, or dress. A new tv, dishwasher or computer.
What do you really need to survive or live your life? I dont mean that you shouldnt buy yourself new clothes or furniture, but you should only buy it if you can afford it. Debt is not worth it for materialistic things. We are all highly stressed, tired, working endless hours to pay for things we dont really need.
What happens when you need something, but you cant afford it and you cant borrow for it?