Hey guys. .
I asked myself recently ,”What has StreetMeals become? What is its potential now that we have gone out and done it?” The answer is it has become a fuel source, and its potential is unlimited.
StreetMeals has become a tool that allows us to find the source to major current problems in the community. The project has developed to become more than just a meals program. By going out and taking the time to cook for people and talk to them, one learns a lot about why people on the street live the way they do, and we can help create solutions to their issues.
We cannot come in thinking we can fix things. If anything, the people living on the streets are the only ones who can really overcome their situations. From problems ranging from bed bugs and theft in the shelters to limited resources like electricity or water in the low income housing projects, these matters need immediate attention and current ineffective systems need to be rethought.
With StreetMeals I feel like we can now bring these issues to light and figure out how to effectively make improvements. Its the interaction that is the solution. Ideas for new projects come to mind every two minutes while working on the project and witnessing the conditions people have to deal with is astonishing.
Simply put, PEOPLE should not live like this. I hope that with some help StreetMeals will expand into numerous projects that effectively and efficiently tackle problems that do not seem to be noticed by the people living comfortably in their clean, safe homes. From now on I will be dedicating some space on the blogs to ideas for projects that you can do in your neighbourhood; feedback from anyone trying would be great as we can help each other help others.
Here are a few ideas to get started:
DONATE CLEAN BED SHEETS TO PEOPLE STAYING IN SHELTERS.
DONATE EVERYDAY ESSENTIALS LIKE SOAP, TOOTHPASTE OR ANY CLOTHING.
PREPARE A KIT. PUT TOGETHER SOME THINGS TO DONATE. E.G. I put together a small box with soup for dinner, some nachos and mixed nuts with some dried fruit, tea and a mug, some toast, cheese, honey,craisins, a plate, some cutlery, candles and a lighter. I put these items based on the issues of not being able to make food in the low income housing due to lack of electricity. This came up when we cooked for a man named Francois that moved here from Quebec and has been living on the streets since 2000. He says that he cannot even operate a toaster or microwave in his housing unit because he will set off the breaker and the whole floor would get upset with him. These items were put together in a matter of minutes and would have allowed Francois to eat dinner that night by candle (not requiring electricity) and enough to make a light breakfast in the morning.
GIVE YOUR EMPTY RECYCLABLE BOTTLES TO THE PERSON YOU PASS EVERY MORNING. THEY ARE WORTH A LOT
SHARE YOUR FOOD.
APPRECIATE THE VALUE OF UNWANTED ITEMS.
We are heading out tomorrow to do some more StreetMeals and also talk to some businesses in the community about doing some projects.
I would also like to thank everyone that has been putting the time into making all this happen and would like to invite anyone looking to contribute Time, Talent or Treasure to the project to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org