Most of us take living in a home for granted. Consider the 90,000 homeless in Los Angeles, as depicted in the recent movie “The Soloist”, about a talented former Julliard musician suffering from mental illness. Or think about the approximately 500 homeless teens living somewhere on the streets of Tucson.
I used to volunteer years ago at Travelers Aid, but the enormity of the problems faced by the homeless burned me out. I can only admire those who continue such tough work. The brother of a former friend of mine is homeless due to his drug addition to “ice. “ He used to be gainfully employed as an engineer, with a wife and two children, and a nice home. That’s all gone now.
Homeless deserve our respect as much as anyone else. It’s hard for them, especially since some in our society think they choose that lifestyle. For many, being on the streets is a way to escape domestic violence and sexual abuse. However they got there, this group of people are now home-less, without a house to live in, without basic shelter.
Agencies helping the homeless in Tucson: Primavera Foundation, 623-5111; Gospel Rescue Mission, 622-3495; Traveler’s Aid of Tucson, Inc. 622-8900.
For homeless teens, the group to call is Youth on Their Own (YOTO) at 293-1136 (www.yoto.org). They are having a Charity Bowling Tournament on July 11, sponsored by the Arizona Roofing Contractors Association. Call now to participate and help.