Homelessness Research Paper
Currently in Wake County, North Carolina, more than 4,000 people are homeless. This problem needs attention because over half of these people are children. According to the University of Tennessee, most of them are exposed to violence, affecting their performance in school.
Just yesterday I was in downtown Raleigh, walking back to my car. I noticed a man and a young child laying down on a bench. They looked cold, sad, and lonely. Around them were trash bags full of cloths, towels, and blankets. I also saw a similar situation week before. These events caused me to question and research homelessness in Wake County.
If you think that homeless shelters are an easy solution for the homeless, you are wrong. Being able to find a shelter with space for you or your family is hard. Most shelters are packed full with people. If a homeless person does manage to get a spot in the shelter, it's not the safest place. Many of the people in there are drug addicts, child predators, and have mental problems. This is not the only concern, very little homeless shelters are actually kept clean, most are filthy with many people having diseases, inflections, and other health conditions. This is why there are many people on the streets, because homeless shelters are a hit or a miss.
Homelessness also has effects on the community. It has an economic impact because the shelters and food they provide are costly. Also, the amount of homeless people in your community can represent the condition of it. If there are many homeless people on streets with shops, it will drive tourists away and affect your income.
Our goal is to supply homeless shelters, and others organizations with over $3000 worth of donations, consisting of toys, food, toiletries, etc, by the end of the school year.
Homelessness is a big issue in wake county. In 2013 Wake County had 1,098 homeless individuals. According to the NCCEH data, children make up 22% of north carolina's homeless population and another 13% are their parents. Single men make up nearly half of the homeless population (47%) while single women are 17%, Veterans are 10% of the homeless population. And this could be an issue because some homeless kids go to school but might not afford to buy lunch or breakfast and kids will not be able to learn on an empty stomach. The number of homeless children in wake county school system has increased by 23% since 2009 to 2,736 students for the past school year. There are 1.3 million homeless students in the U.S. and 24,492 in North Carolina according to a report released in November by the national center for homeless education at UNC Greensboro. Michelle Mozingo, the wake county system’s district liaison for providing help under the McKinney-Vento act, said said about half of the district’s homeless students are from families who are temporarily sharing living spaces. Project CATCH estimates the number of homeless children in Wake County at close to 5,000. Tisdale said those children are invisible to many people because most of them aren’t living in shelters or on the Streets.
Raleigh Rescue Mission (RRM) is a big contributor to helping the homeless. More than 4000 people in Wake county are homeless and 2736 are students attending school (Raleigh Rescue Mission, 2017). RRM provides food, shelter, education, and support to the homeless. The RRM regularity holds drives for clothing, food, and other household items. Everyday RRM makes an average of 383 meals a day. Yet there are many more homeless men and women in Wake county. Though the contribution of RRM is large and substantial it does not cover every single man and women in Wake county.
Though RRM is not the only organization helping in Raleigh. Another organization is looking into building houses for the homeless. AIA North Carolina Activate14 was looking for a design for building tiny houses (J. Michael Weldon, 2015). The design consisted of a small living area, that contained a kitchen and dining facility, laundry and showers. Along with little walkways that led to 12 small homes include a bathroom, bed, and dining area. These tiny houses are planned to be built in a small community along with a garden. Even with volunteers willing to build this community, 12 tiny homes adds up to almost $120,000. Overall, the development would house just 12 out of the hundreds of homeless men and women in Wake County, and would costs a fortune.
Raleigh and it’s citizens are helping too. Many citizens volunteer at shelters and soup kitchens, but there is still a need for more. The only thing many companies need now is the community’s contribution. There are already many supporters and new ones join everyday. Raleigh Rescue Mission and AIA North Carolina Activate14 are definitely helping to lower homelessness rates but it is not enough. The plan for tiny homes can house only 12 and Raleigh Rescue Mission is only based on those who come in and seek assistance. There are still many living on the streets begging for money who have no idea where to go for help.
Now that you know what other people are doing to help, here is some information on what you can do to help the issue. We all know that it is very hard for the homeless to get jobs, which means they receive no commission. So, what we can do is give the homeless a job.
In many states, there is something call the “Container Deposit Law.” This is a way to make a few dollars a day by recycling cans, containers, bottles, etc. With this, we can collect recyclables and donate them to homeless shelter to give the the homeless. Or, we could carry a bag of recyclables and give them to homeless people that we see on the streets.
Giving recyclables to the homeless isn't the only thing you can do to help. Things like clothes, toys, and other things you don't need, can be donated to homeless shelters or Good Wills. Also, you can volunteer at homeless shelters or soup kitchens.
Take a look at our Action Plan to donate things you don't need or don't use anymore to homeless shelters and homeless organizations.
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WeltonCorrespondent, J. Michael. "Tiny Houses for Raleigh's Homeless." Newsobserver. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Mar. 2017.