No matter how much our economies develop and grow, hunger and homelessness seem to be perennial problems everywhere. There will always be someone who cannot afford to have a roof over their head or have two meals a day. There could be many reasons for this- for many this is a temporary phase of their lives, for others, it becomes a way of life as they arenít in a position to help themselves.
Financial distress- Indebtedness is one of the major causes of hunger and homelessness. Many people tend to borrow way above their means for various reasons, and when they cannot pay it back they have to skip meals regularly. A delay or no payments towards rent and other utilities results in many people being evicted. Though financial distress is interconnected with the points mentioned later, this is also an independent point that deserves a mention.
Health issues- Sometimes well-earning people become homeless and sleep on empty stomachs because of unexpected health issues. If you are someone who earns $1,000 a month and suddenly youíre told you will need $25,000 for brain cancer treatment, how would you arrange for the money? Sometimes people borrow way above their means for this, when their savings and money run out, they stop treatment and eventually arenít able to fend for themselves.
Family issues- Sometimes, some parents borrow heavily for various reasons- their childrenís higher education, marriage or to fulfill some of their dreams. Many a time, some parents even sell their ancestral property and other belongings to fulfill their childrenís demands. When the desired outcomes are not achieved, slowly families default on their regular payments. If proper interventions are not done, they eventually fall deep into debt and lose everything they have. Most of the time, the families are not at fault for this, sometimes people cheat them of money for vested interests.
Loss of livelihood- Recessions are at fault here. Due to this, many non-essential industries see job and salary cuts. Those who depend on that income suddenly do not have any means to sustain themselves. This is quite common in tourism, luxury goods, and other non-essential industries. Though this is a temporary phenomenon, it can be quite taxing on those families who have to borrow more than they can afford to make ends meet. These are the people who require the most help.
Environmental factors- When an unexpected natural disaster strikes a region, many farmers and other locals who depend on the land suddenly have no means to fend for themselves. They either take help from the government or feed the hungry organizations. These people are ready and willing to work but canít temporarily due to destruction caused by cyclones, earthquakes, floods, war, or any other disaster of that sort.
Addiction- Addiction in any form- alcohol, prescription drugs, casual drugs, or others can cause tremendous strain on people and their families. The addict will go to any level to get his daily share of the drug, whether it is through purchasing, borrowing, or stealing. When the funds dry up, these addicts have nowhere to go, eat or survive. They need the help of charities to help them come out of their addiction.
In the end
???????In the US alone, there are more than 50 million people whoíve experienced food insecurity. Though many like-minded charities have helped with soup kitchens and the like, it is not enough to feed everyone. Similarly, there are more than 500,000 people whoíre homeless at any given point time in the US. Though temporary accommodation is given, it is usually not enough.
Thatís why we encourage people to donate to charities like the Catholic Connect Foundation which distributes food and aid to charities and those who need it the most. Donating even a small $15 amount monthly can help feed someone or shelter someone from the elements of nature. By doing so, you get the blessings of God.