Monthly Archives: February 2013

Are our homeless charities in Savannah toxic? | ‘Toxic Charity’ author helps Guiding Light Mission hold homeless clients accountable |

Have you heard about this book on our approach to homelessness in many communities?

We feel a review by our community of this book & taking on the challenges it gives us would make a huge difference in our communities response, making us better at how we make progress towards addressing the many issues created by homelessness here.

This community came together to address accountability in their faith community & the homeless people they serve as well!

We can do that too!

This response was given to this comment from Beahboomer:

“Anyone who gets off 131 at Leonard sees the same people everyday and they work in shifts. One begs while two others are under the bridge. They never seem to have a shortage to buy cigarettes.”

Palmerlee responded:

“In Robert Lupton’s book, “Toxic Charity,” he says often people need love more than they need money. Giving money is a short-term answer to a long-term problem. Directing them to an agency that can offer this assistance is a good place to start.


Also simply saying hello, waving, or making eye contact. Many of these neighbors have been marginalized and not seen by society in general. We just drive by. So let’s at least give them the dignity of being seen and not ignored. Don’t give them money. It is frequently going to feed addictions.”

via ‘Toxic Charity’ author helps Guiding Light Mission hold homeless clients accountable |


Do you agree with this perspective on giving food cards to panhandlers? | How you should respond to panhandlers: Join a live chat with Grand Rapids mission directors |

Do you agree with this perspective on giving food cards to panhandlers?

“Unearned food, clothing, toiletries are just as enabling as cash and does not engage homeless individuals in job and skills training which are needed to end homelessness,” wrote john214.

We need a discussion about solutions to panhandling here in Savannah!

Do you think using old (available) parking meters (since we’ve replaced lots of our old ones with modern, credit card accepting meters) to collect coins as donations for homeless services would work here in Savannah?

Who should receive the funds?

Old services that aren’t meeting the need for services related to our panhandlets or new, innovative services that help them get the counseling & recovery services they really need?

We’re opinionated & actually have those new, innovative services available through the new Day Center being built out by HUGS!

These services also “engage homeless individuals in job and skills training which are needed to end homelessness” as suggested above!

How you should respond to panhandlers: Join a live chat with Grand Rapids mission directors |

How do we help our homeless find meaning for their lives & escape hopelessness? | There’s More to Life Than Being Happy – Atlantic Mobile

Giving meaning to life for a homeless person living a life of hopelessness isn’t easy.

How would you approach that task?

Why should they languish in their hopelessness?

We seek to help others find meaning in their lives so we feel our challenge to take on the homeless should be a calling for more of us, for our entire community.

How do you find your meaning?

And how has finding your meaning changed your life?

A quote from the referenced article should help us focus our thoughts & come up with some answers as we seek to determine an approach that makes sense for our homeless:

Learn who Frankl is by reading the linked article below!

Frankl writes:

This uniqueness and singleness which distinguishes each individual and gives a meaning to his existence has a bearing on creative work as much as it does on human love. When the impossibility of replacing a person is realized, it allows the responsibility which a man has for his existence and its continuance to appear in all its magnitude. A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears toward a human being who affectionately waits for him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life. He knows the “why” for his existence, and will be able to bear almost any “how.”

So where should we do this work of helping our homeless find meaning for their lives?

We believe the where starts with our street ministries & a much more effective outreach program that we’ve written about elsewhere, in our response to the SMN editorial, “Mend it, don’t end it“.

Will finding meaning translate to ending their homelessness?

We believe yes & we believe it starts with Housing First.

Then the work of turning that meaning into growth of faith (in themselves, others & a higher power that protects & sustains them) & growth in life so that once again they can become productive for themselves & their eternity can begin starts with finding the meaning in their lives.

Do you want to be a part of that escape from hopelessness?

Or do you want to focus on their current state & be hopeless with them?

Their future lies in our ability to find meaning in our lives & then helping others find theirs!

We hope you can be a part of that solution!

via There’s More to Life Than Being Happy – Atlantic Mobile

Let’s deal with this mecca thing! Are we truly a mecca for the homeless? An alternative view!

Homelessness in Savannah, Stories for Learning

You see this is an issue that has been raised in many forms recently as we try to get a handle on our homelessness here in Savannah!

Many issues are associated with homelessness, like vagrancy & the risk to our tourists & residents of our”feedings” (better known to us advocates as street ministries)!

At the heart of this “mecca” issue is the fact that we are fine with us being a mecca for tourists & new residents but we can’t seem to get our heads around why homeless people want to come to Savannah!

The realities are that we are on the north south route (I-95), we do have a nice climate for the most part & we do feed the homeless a lot!

(In fact we will admit & new homeless hear it from their peers, that there is NO reason for a homeless person to go hungry or…

View original post 410 more words

Our similar vision for Savannah’s Housing First needs | Oma Village – container housing project for homeless in Marin County CA: More About What’s New at Homeward Bound of Marin

The project is called Oma Village after a grassroots effort started last year by the Rev. Betty Pagett of San Rafael known as “Oma” to her grandsons to support homeless families. For more details, please see the Homeward Bound blog on Novato Patch.

We found this project with our good friend Google!

Here’s a robust example of a serious commitment (to the tune of $3M) to take forward what was once a grassroots project by a Pastor!

This is not much un-like our efforts here in Savannah, GA & as we write this we are stymied with the process & concerned that the priority of those involved is not necessarily to create the solution together.

Therefore, we are reaching out to others with developed hearts for this effort who may be able to put us all on a path that more readily gets the project off the ground.

Our efforts to create a “Savannah Area Interfaith Taskforce on Ending Homelessness” most recently with our Exploratory Meeting held on January, 17, 2013 at The Savannah Baptist Center brought out a great crowd anxious to hear how the faith community could possibly come together for this effort.

The vision was shared & in fact there are two pieces of adjacent property on Wheaton St in Savannah ready for us to evaluate for now two separate housing first based projects.

The vision is for one to take on the chronic homeless issue & the other for a similar project for families or women & children!

We are ready to develop a business plan & a supportable business model for these projects! We seek YOUR involvement, whether as part of the broader faith community or individually as you are called!

Notice the FAQ in this linked blog post above that establishes some common questions that we would likely hear from our community as well as we seek to develop this effort.

This FAQ is embedded here for your reading through Scribd:

via More About What’s New at Homeward Bound of Marin.

via Oma Village – container housing project for homeless in Marin County CA: More About What’s New at Homeward Bound of Marin.

How would you address the self confidence of our homeless population? | BBC News – Homeless sign up for Recovery College

An innovative college for homeless people in London, the first of its kind in the country, is attracting hundreds of students.

What HUGS provides in the way of counseling can also be considered as a way to address self confidence in our homeless population too!

But the experience of the fledgling college suggests that homeless people want more than temporary support.


Launched as an experiment in autumn 2012, the college was taken aback by the demand and found would-be students knocking on the door. At the start of the second term, there are now 395 people enrolled on 60 courses.

The most popular courses have proved to be about raising self-confidence and developing self-esteem, says Andy Williams, who helps to organise the college.

Steve takes three buses to get to the college. His last time in education was leaving school aged 12.

This reflects the corrosive quality of homelessness and how it isolates individuals.