Additional Facts about the homeless and hurting in America. (Updated regularly)
Shared JUNE 21, 2015: Over the past four decades the inmate prison population of the United States has become the largest world-wide. Children who have lost one or both parents serving jail time has grown to nearly the three million mark. In addition, rising numbers of women are giving birth during their incarceration. Special challenges arise for both mother and child. Active family as well as our entire society bear the burden as well. Statistics report for every 25 women incarcerated, one of them is already pregnant. Special programs for qualifying mothers in nine of our states offer nurseries and programs are helping to lower the recidivism rate. Yet, there are still have many issues to address. What happens to many of these women and their children after release? What about child of those with an extended sentence. All affected require far more attention and individual care. We need a greater support structure to prepare these women and their little lambs to enter back into the mainstream. We need aftercare for all including men coming out from behind bars. We don't want to turn anyone back out into the streets without what they will need to face life successfully.
Shared MAY 18, 2015: The battle for charitable funding within government agencies rages, as they continuously cut expenditures for the needy. The reality of persistent hunger that leads to disease and fills our emergency rooms escalates. Every year the numbers of individuals visiting emergency rooms and the cost of treating them grows while the provisions and opportunity for them to be treated dwindles. Multiple chronic health issues due to poor nutritional provision, as well as lack of food, can be fingered as one of the root causes. Perhaps some of our government tax money would better serve to secure enough good nutritional food for those who are in lack, resulting in a healthier society lessening visitors to emergency rooms.
Shared APRIL 13, 2015: Some of us can identify with hunger listening to our tummy's squeal having had breakfast and it's already 2 in the afternoon demanding we detour to the drive through to quiet the disturbance and fill that hunger void. Perhaps we've experienced a bit more than that having to wait through a busy days activities to feed our hunger but many have never had to wait an extra day or more to stay alive . The issue of hunger world-wide is of large scale concern. In the United States, the Department of Agriculture determines 49 million people, including 16 million children are going without what is needed on a daily basis. One in seven households and one in six individuals have struggles providing or obtaining adequate food supplies to keep them from going to bed hungry. That's a lot of people going without proper needful nutrition and necessary survival elements for their health. Many of these precious souls are elderly. The counts do not include our millions that are on the streets facing hunger, uncertain where their next morsel of bread might be found.
Shared MARCH, 30 2015: Happy Resurrection Week of the RISEN CHRIST to you ALL! Turkey, ham, roast, potatoes and all the rest of the trimmings will grace many of our tables this coming Sunday and we will enjoy the warmth of our homes, family and friends. We simply ask this week that we all might pray for those who are alone and or lonely. And if possible we will be filled with thoughtfulness towards them and move with compassionate hearts. Perhaps we can invite someone to share the Holiday with us or simply hand a meal to a hungry person. Let's be the demonstration of Christ's resurrected life by helping to raise another person's life circumstances. We've all been given something to share, even if it's only a prayer lifted heavenward for someone we know in need.
Shared FEBRUARY 9, 2015: Nearly too heartbreaking to report yet we need to stay informed. It's a heart wrenching experience when a family member is nowhere to be found. When a child, young adult or any of our loved ones has gone missing the inner agony can be and usually is beyond expression. In the United States it is estimated anywhere between 1.6 and 2.8 million youth under the age of 18 runaway or are thrown out from their homes each year, comprising 39% of the homeless population. This is overwhelming. Very few at a young age are equipped to handle the well organized perils of seedy underworld crime designed to trap them. Too many easily become prey to evil lurking on every corner just waiting to victimize them. They find themselves caught up in unspeakable horrors in efforts to merely survive. It is reported that 32% of these young ones trying to make a go of it on the streets attempt suicide. There are an estimated 5,000 deaths annually of children under the age of 18,who make their homes in the streets, due to assaults and illnesses. We all have opportunity to become an extension of God's loving compassion upon those who are out of the way and to win their souls for the Kingdom of God. What is God calling you to do?
Shared JANUARY 26, 2015: An entire month has passed since the Christmas Holidays and it is sure that some of our Christmas spirit has also slipped away from us. I am here to remind you we still have homeless on the streets. Please, let's not forget about them as temperatures plunge deeper into the single digits and in many places below the zero mark. Human beings were never intended to brave these elements. Please pray as shelters are few, space is limited and many have limitations as to how long a person or families can be housed. Do you have an empty church pew, upon which Jesus might rest his head from a weary load? Please put the resources God has blessed you with to serious prayer.
Shared DECEMBER 22, 2014: There are so many needs the homeless wandering our streets have that it's difficult to pinpoint which are most important. Of course amongst our main concerns are food and warm shelter with loving caring people sharing from their hearts. During this holiday season, as many families enjoy the securities of family and homes, we want to share a list of simple things some of us may have that we can bless those living on the streets. When you're constantly outside subject to the elements you need special considerations. Warm coats with hoods are great! Please think about spending a few dollars to weatherproof them if you are able. This can make a huge difference in protection from moisture. Throw in a rain poncho if you might have one to spare as extra protection is always welcome! One of the main requests in shelters is for clean dry socks. For a homeless person on their feet regularly keeping their feet healthy can be a great burden. Blankets are a huge benefit to someone sleeping on the streets. It also can carry meager belongings and be used in shelters where there frequent bedding shortages . Gloves, knit caps, toiletries, and a backpack to carry it all in can be a super blessing too. Do you happen to have a tent that is not being used? This can mean all the difference for some, including entire families with children that are out there. Flashlights, shoes, underwear, nail clippers and of course non-perishable food items that can be zip-locked into bags to keep them dry are always appreciated. Please pray and if you find you have any of the above or a heart to purchase some of these items, many churches as well as shelters are more than happy to get them to the needy.
OUR HOMELESS VETERANS
Shared November 10, 2014: It's difficult to imagine the horrors of war. Laying your life on the line, facing enemies, spending sleepless nights wondering how loved ones are faring without your love and support close at hand. These are only a fragment of the challenges these courageous ones face. The reality of losing your life or being disabled is ever present. These heroic servants know that what they are giving of themselves is valuable and necessary to try and secure their nation's freedom. Loneliness and longing to be with dear ones raise the question, "Has the trade been- and will it be -worth the sacrifices made?" Really only those who have served in combat can accurately imagine what the true cost of surrendering one's life to military service involves. Your life is no longer your own, but given over to directives and mandates of war that must be obeyed. Sadly, for many of our veterans, the payoff for their noble offerings given to protect our homeland, and each of us personally, takes a lifetime toll. Upon returning home the prices paid are accompanied by great personal losses, ranging from mental, physical, emotional and spiritual agonies beyond description, that leaves them outcasts from family and society. Now some are suffering in the trenches of a new war; homeless. Sleeping in alleys, on streets, park benches, in dumpsters or anywhere they might find temporary defense against the elements, it is estimated that about 13% of our homeless adult population are Veterans. The shame is ours as a nation. We have yet to show true gratitude for those who have cared so deeply for our welfare by laying their lives on the line. These precious souls deserve our deepest thanks with much more than token medals and verbal promises.
HELP US HELP THEM! THERE ARE SOLUTIONS FOR OUR HURTING AND HOMELESS!
WHAT ABOUT THE TEN YEAR PLAN TO END HOMELESSNESS ?
Shared October 27, 2014: In 2002 a national campaign endorsed by federal officials was adopted in hundreds of cities throughout America, with billions of dollars spent on the project. Promising to eradicate homelessness within a ten year period, 2012 capped the sad failure to end the tragic human element of chronic homelessness. Looming larger than life and accompanied by the stench of death, the still growing numbers of the homeless expanded, covering our nation's landscape. All we need do is observe the vast numbers wandering the streets within urban as well as suburban neighborhoods to realize the plan's intentions no longer carry life-giving breath.
In 2010 and even before findings could be fully tallied the project eliminating homelessness and the extremes of poverty failing miserably, a tactical maneuver was decided upon. The federal government would continue the program by changing its name for another 5 years, with a new end date of 2015. The date has now been extended to 2017. In earnest we must examine the current bill of goods being offered to us. A light has been shined on its ineffectiveness, its cost, and the government's poor choice to extend it to avoid admitting the abysmal failure of the plan. We need to learn from the past and plan for the future wisely by replacing old stale thinking and repeated patterns of collapsing breakdowns with new innovative arrangements.
If you'd be interested in helping or would like to know more about viable solutions to this heartache find us on our Contact page.
COLDER MONTHS SOON AHEAD
Shared October 6, 2014: Here in the Thumb area of Michigan we have experienced abnormal chilly temperatures this past Summer of 2014. More frigid weather promises to settle over most of our nation. For us with concerns for those without shelter this sends even deeper chills through our souls. There are multitudes of at risk individuals living on the streets in impoverished hopelessness facing a brutal life. This not only includes men but women and children. It's a harsh reality we must all put to serious thought with sincere attention to what we are being called to do by God to ease their suffering. Though the bitterness of homelessness presents a huge demand and the obstacles are numerous, the issues that threaten so many can be worked out if we follow God's plans and His ways and take the individual places assigned to us by Him. Sincere prayer and seeking God's will, not our own, empowers us to win this war, in the righteous ways of our Lord, for all the right reasons. God's Active Word Ministries has invested years in research and development through seeking God's heart in much prayer and practical analysis to establish His plans. If you desire to be used of God for His purposes concerning those in need and are interested in hearing more, please contact us through this website.
OUR ELDERLY HOMELESS
Shared September 8, 2014: Imagine what it might be like for us to be facing our declining years and homelessness at the same time. Often times our elderly population are forgotten as those who are silently moving amongst our homeless. We assume there is an automatic system firmly in place to care for them and all the issues they face. Sadly this is not the case. Our aging population trying to exist without homes continues to increase amongst those seeking shelter from the harsh blows of life. The loss of a mate, inability to care for themselves and other somber circumstances has put a number of our older citizens, many with serious special needs at huge risk. Unfortunately some are not able to meet government mandates and fall between the cracks. These precious ones perish on our streets more quickly, unable to cope than other age groups. That's right: they die homeless and alone.
It is reported without a roof over their heads, the vulnerable aging passing on in the highways and byways is growing at such rapid rates that our officials do not want the vast numbers reported. This dilemma appears to be expertly ignored and well hidden.
Poverty, declining health, loss of a mate and income, lack of availability of affordable housing and many other factors contribute to the pain of facing life without a roof over their heads for many persons including those who are maturing.
We will be sharing more about this area of homelessness and solutions to the problem. This week we simply ask you to think of and pray for them. Now take a moment before God to imagine, if you can, that you might be forced to spend your last days wandering the streets without the security of a home or aid of loving hearts to help you in time of need.
New Jersey's Tent City For Homeless Encampment Closed
Shared August 24, 2014: In July 2014 the homeless encampment providing shadow dwellings near the Jersey shore that came to be known as Tent City and shined an uncomfortable spotlight on homelessness in the suburbs was declared closed after the last of its 120 occupants was placed in temporary housing.
The camp had it's beginnings in 2003 and it is not clear how many residents actually lived within the modest makeshift dwellings throughout the years.
A quote from the Rev. Steve Brigham, an advocate who lived at the camp, stated; "Without a doubt, we brought awareness to the fact that there's homelessness in the suburbs, and a great need for a shelter, and for affordable housing — smaller houses on smaller pieces of land that people can afford on a low-wage job," Brigham said. "There still is no shelter in Ocean County; this is a Band-Aid. It's better than getting kicked to the curb with nothing, but it's still a Band-Aid."
With a heart of sadness we share that it has been reported the solutions for the last of the 120 camp's residents has been to provide apartments for at least 10 months and motels for another two. As part of a court-sanctioned agreement between the former residents and town officials it seems another mere momentary, make-do, quick fix had been decided upon.
Sure to reach well into one million dollars, this expense prolongs issues we must face and will at some point, only to return many to the streets to search for shelter once again. There are better, permanent and far more viable solutions to these problems. We are beginning the first phases of God's heart for the homeless and hurting which promise to take this dilemma to a new level of hope and expectancy for quality change.
PLEASE STAY WITH US AS WE REVEAL PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS AND SHARE GOD'S VISION TO CHANGE OUR WORLD.