At school I sponsor the International Friendship Exchange Club. The focus of our club is community service and cultural exchange. We have about thirty members in our club.
Last year we focused on helping and working with the physically and mentally disadvantaged population. It was an amazing experience helping with activities and social functions at the organization. My club kids loved it. This year we want to focus on the homeless because in our area, we see a large number of transients coming through.
Our first activity was to volunteer at the homeless shelter. On Saturday we all met at the shelter at 7:00 to help serve breakfast. I was amazed that twenty four of the thirty club members showed up for this event. Goes to show you there are some wonderful teenagers out there who believes in helping others rather than themselves.
Bob, is the one who runs the breakfast. He told me that there are some days they would see 500 to 600 people coming through the shelter. Then there are days, where barely any people come in. He said most of the homeless are people from the age of 18-24 who are hooked on drugs like Meth and heroin and alchohol. The main goal of the shelter is to get the ones who are hooked on drugs to come in and detox. They have an on site detox center as well as hold counseling session for the drug and alcohol addicts. In fact, when the kids and I got through with serving breakfast and cleaning, we saw a large group attending the counseling session.
According to Ali Bytes Blog “Though we probably see them the most, single men comprise only 44 percent of the homeless population, single women 13 percent, families with children 36 percent, and unaccompanied minors seven percent.” When we were at the shelter we saw mostly men and a small percentage of women, roughly about twenty women. We did not see or actually couldn’t tell if there were families because there were two lines for breakfast: one for men and the other for women.
As a club, we are going to focus on helping the homeless in our area. We do not care why they are homeless, we just know we have to do something. We are going to have a can food drive, a clothing, and blanket for the shelter. I wish we could build a bigger shelter since this one is over forty years old and in need of a major face lift. Maybe we will be able to do something.