Urban, street or hood living is a world away from how most non city dwellers think, or expect their needs to fall in place.
Imagine life is like standing on a board. Your board gets broader with a high school diploma, broader still with a college degree, a good whole family, and a social network that is their to encourage you academically and in your vocational sphere. each of these things are rope you hold on to while walking easily on this huge plank life has dealt you. When one rope is weak it is hardly noticed. You may lose your job however the likelihood of getting another quickly is good.
Imaging the dweller. his board is very narrow he is almost at time teetering and balancing. he didn’t quite get the G.E.D. but he want to, His family is shall we say not whole, Mom was an addict and in jail for selling. pop now which one of moms men is pop. he is just not around. your social network are mostly people who know how to pirate the cable channel from house to house. people who think jail time is admirable, or people who just don’t care. But you want to change. Here come this church these relational group of people who are different. they seem genuine, but you know they probably will run when you need them the most. The temp service gets ahold of you for a job.
You want to go but you are on this narrow board, you have had no steady income.You don’t have a car you need a bus pass. you need food for lunch. the temp-service says they will get you steady 40 hours a week work. when you get started after orientation, they only wont you one day , but call at the end of the week for next week. you call and maybe you get two days and maybe you get a full week. The rope you thought you had got weaker. You really don’t know, mean while the accuser in your head is telling you how much of a deadbeat you are. You are depressed with out a rope to hold you up on your board. this church group is your hope to just stay standing. If you fall ist back to the addiction to escape or worse.
Many of the people we help are literally falling of the board and crawling back on only to be knocked off by a social system of help that entraps the very people they are to be helping in a system of nooses around their necks.
Help people, getting involved in their life. Go to the grocery store and show them how to by groceries with a 50 dollar food card. That takes talent. Or, be there when their landlord does nothing about the roaches that came from n=the apartment next door. Be their advocate to a dead beat landlord, who is not being held accountable by the city. or, drive them to work and pick them up. They have no rope and you may be the only one they will get for a long time.