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Blessing Ibomo Ezo: 3 Things You Need to Know About Homeless People

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I am very lucky to have met a lot of amazing people in my life; including the homeless people I had the opportunity to serve. Being a volunteer at the ‘Friday Mission Lunch’ in Paris has given me the chance to interact and get to personally know more about homeless people.

It is very heart breaking to hear people give all sorts of reasons for not helping the homeless. Homeless people are human beings who find themselves in a particularly difficult situation. A quote by Morgan Freeman best describes this situation “Was I always going to be here? No I was not. I was going to be homeless at one time, a taxi driver, truck driver or any kind of job that would get me a crust of bread. You never know what’s going to happen.” You might not be homeless today but nobody knows tomorrow.
I have decided to list three facts about homeless people and why your reasons for not helping are rubbish.

Not All Homeless People are Alcoholics or Drug Addicts
I was very surprised when a very nice and kind hearted friend of mine decided not to give money to a homeless man begging on the street. I asked him why and he said, “The homeless people are just going to use my money to buy alcohol and drugs”.

Fact number one: not all homeless people are alcoholics or drug addicts. I overheard a man in the train telling his friends and family how flabbergasted he was when he gave a homeless man five bottles of beer (remaining drinks from previous house party) and the homeless man replied was “no no no no alcohol.” According to Alcoholrehab.com, Homeless is often associated with substance abuse. While it is true that many within this group do have drug or alcohol problems, it would be wrong to claim that the two are always linked. Most addicts don’t become homeless and most homeless people aren’t addicts.

Not All Homeless People are Lazy; They Just Don’t Have Better Options
Some people believe that homeless people are just too lazy to get a job and get themselves out of their difficult situation. I once met a refugee man in Hong Kong when I was still the project manager of the Hong Kong Distribution department at Crossroads Foundation. The man had a good job and his own house back in his home country until he left due to the war in his country. Getting to Hong Kong, he wasn’t able to work due to his status (Asylum seeker). As a result he became homeless for months in Hong Kong, because he didn’t have money to feed himself, not to mention affording any type of housing rent.
Fact number two: not all homeless people are lazy; a number of unforeseen circumstance or situations that are beyond an individual’s control can lead to homelessness.

Small Gifts/Donation are Appreciated
I am neither the daughter of a president nor am I a very wealthy woman, at this time. To be honest, I actually need more money for my schooling and other things; but I strongly believe in giving and helping those in need. There was a period of time in my life when I used my last bit of money I had to buy yogurt. On my way back to school, I saw a homeless lady on the streets under the sun begging and I decided to share my yogurt with her and she gladly accepted it with a smile.
Fact number three: the little is highly appreciated, as far as you show love and care. You might not have money but try to smile, show and care to the homeless people. To be honest, I don’t give money or gifts to all the homeless people I see on the street all the time, but I try my best to show them love and care in other ways.

Jan Schakowsky once said, “There is a lot that happens around the world we cannot control. We cannot stop earthquakes, we cannot prevent droughts, and we cannot prevent all conflict, but when we know where the hungry, the homeless and the sick exist, then we can help.”

To know more about homeless people and their situation, kindly find us on Facebook by clicking here:->‘A Home at Last

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Savannah1969

MS IbomoEzo E. Blessing is currently furthering her education 'Master’s degree program in International relations and diplomacy' in Paris.MS Blessing was the project manager for the Hong Kong Distribution department at Crossroads Foundation (an NGO based in Hong Kong) for two years. . Ms Blessing was also the Secretary of the African Student Club at the University of Saint Joseph.

15 Comments

  1. girl

    August 25, 2015 at 4:48 am

    I hope you know there are more homeless people in Nigeria ,and it didnt have to take you living in Paris to know this fact!

    • I no send

      August 25, 2015 at 10:16 am

      Thanks..my thoughts exactly..should we go thousands of miles away to learrn things about homeless people. Check out the nearest flyover bridge in lagos in the evenings and you will see complete families living there…some people are removed from the reality that is in thier own backyard…

  2. Ross

    August 25, 2015 at 7:41 am

    I doubt I’ve read anything more completely removed from the NIgerian-reality than this article. I’m not sure what the intention is. There isn’t really a clear message ( the whole homeless bla bla sounds more like a call for attention) to what you’re writing about.
    I have a few questions, which might help me better understand this article:

    1. Was this your experience in Ikeja?
    2. Does this in anyway or form tally with the plight of the homeless in Nigeria?? If so, kindly enlighten us on how you were able to discover the similarities between the homeless in Europe and the homeless in Africa. Homeless isn’t always homeless everywhere you know.
    3. Are you writing to show some organisation you’re trying to get a job at in Paris that you also write on a well-known Nigerian blog?
    4. When you conversed with the homeless on Ikorodu road, did they tell you this is their experience too??

    Maybe there’s something less selfish than I think going on in this article, unfortunately you didn’t make that clear. All you’ve told us is that you volunteered in a soup kitchen in Paris.
    I volunteered in 4 where I lived in Europe and I can tell you, apart from the smell of their clothes, they have NOTHING in common with the homeless man in Yaba.
    BN probably isn’t your audience for this article dear.

  3. annie manny Bae

    August 25, 2015 at 8:22 am

    Just for better [email protected] where r you from again? Gerrrarrrrrahia mehn!!! b4 i insult sombori

    • Nobody

      August 25, 2015 at 9:39 am

      what is “Gerrrarrrrrahia mehn” ??

    • I no send

      August 25, 2015 at 10:18 am

      Lol……..U couldn’t have summarised it up any better..yes……geraraha mehn shiiiiiiiii..this is job applicatn tinz

  4. annie manny Bae

    August 25, 2015 at 8:23 am

    *@d writer

  5. Isabel

    August 25, 2015 at 9:00 am

    RossI hope you know that not only people living in Nigeria visits Bellanaija because I personally live in the United Kingdom and yes the article is relevant,at least to me. The point the writer stated about not giving homeless people money because of drug or alcohol reasons is true, I personally sometimes don’t want to because of this reason but then again on a second thought I will give them because I will know that I have done my part.

    • Ross

      August 25, 2015 at 10:21 am

      And the point of my reply was that she should tie-in the experience of a homeless person in Europe to one in Africa so it’s more relate able. Is that so hard to comprehend??
      The writer should do her good works, but bear in mind that a Nigerian talking about her experiences in a soup kitchen in Paris is not something to be proud of; It makes her sound boarder-line clueless!

  6. Who/

    August 25, 2015 at 9:38 am

    On another note, beggars and homeless people are beginning to take over the roads of lekki. . They risk being hit by vehicles because they walk so casually in between moving vehicles begging for arms. Little children with their mothers sitting on the pavement giving them directions, as well as women carrying twin children even late into the night.

    The Nigerian authorities should do something.

  7. The real D

    August 25, 2015 at 10:51 am

    I was not sure how I felt about the article initially then I read the bio and o boy did that turn me off, reeks of the typical Nigerian braggadocio. I am not one to bother reading bios but something about this article made me do that.

    • HMV

      August 25, 2015 at 2:48 pm

      Are you jealous?

  8. BabyandBathWater

    August 25, 2015 at 3:02 pm

    Lets not throw the baby away with the bath water, The message to give to those in need(homeless), try substituting the barriers for giving outside the country with that in Nigeria and try to help out those in need.

  9. chi-e-z

    August 25, 2015 at 6:17 pm

    Here’s my thing if I didn’t have any warm place to lay my head and I had to eat out of dumpsters, take shower in woods everyday which I’ve some if not all of these…sucks like hell when you’re in such conodrum… I’ld be a very very not sober person. When I see homeless people that are sober perplexes me. We like to withdraw from a situation and act like there aren’t human beings just suffering in hell on this earth human beings just like us till things happen discrimination and isolation is real and if you call yourself a “christian” doing such to others because they have less and not looking out for others you need to read your bible again [Jeremiah.7,James,1st John 14, and more…]. Only grace saves us and keeps any of us where we are.

  10. red

    August 26, 2015 at 11:24 am

    Dear Writer, Thanks for the share!

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