On any given night in America, anywhere from 700,000 to 2 million people have nowhere to go, nowhere to sleep. Have you seen them?
Shelters offer relief on a first-come, first-served basis, but when they reach full capacity, they must turn the rest of those seeking a place to sleep away. And although most provide refuge for the night, the homeless must fend for themselves during the day.
To help them get back on their feet, Tzu Chi provides help to the homeless across the United States.
Breakfast is Ready
The city known for the world’s most famous home – The White House – is also where the poverty rate is the highest in the country. 1 in 5 people live below the poverty line in the nation’s capitol, Washington, D.C.
Since 2004, local volunteers have been collecting bread that would have been discarded by local bakeries, and serving breakfast to the homeless.
Braving the Elements
During the winter, the temperature in Chicago routinely averages 20° Fahrenheit.
Shelters provide basic sleeping materials, but the homeless need more to stay warm. Since 2004, Tzu Chi volunteers have gone to local homeless shelters to provide comfort from the cold weather.
Each blanket is made from 70 recycled plastic bottles. To dispose of 70 bottles, it takes 1,764g of CO2 output, and 6,201ml of water.
On average, it rains roughly 150 days a year in Seattle, Washington.
Many charity programs provide food, blankets, and other pieces of clothing, but what about a remedy for wet feet?
In 2006, Tzu Chi’s young volunteers found a solution.
The Road Home
Skid Row, Los Angeles: Encouraged by the kindness of Tzu Chi Volunteers, Mary overcame her struggle with homelessness.
You too can help the homeless find their way home.