I went to the Fourth Presbyterian Church today at 7 pm to listen to a discussion led by 5 panelists which consisted of three agency representatives and two homeless men. The discussion was very interesting! Here’s some of the information I learned.
1.) More than 656,000 people experienced homelessness on a typical night in the United States in 2011. On January 25, 2011 there were 6,546 individuals who were homeless in the streets of Chicago!
2.) Nearly two-thirds of people suffering from homelessness are individuals and the other third are people in families (parents and their children).
3.) A majority of Chicagoans face housing cost burdens. In 2009, 54.6% of Chicago renters and 48.3% of mortgaged homeowners paid more than one-third of their income on housing.
Interesting Fact: Chicago is doing a lot for its homeless people, and will continue to work for solutions for homelessness. Chicago was the 1st city to develop a plan to fight homelessness 10 years ago!
Reflection: Hearing the numbers of homeless men, women and children in Chicago is heartbreaking. However, since I’ve been in Chicago (little over a month) I have encountered many homeless individuals. It saddens me seeing these individuals on the street, suffering and trying to survive out in the cold. It made me think twice about complaining about anything that I don’t like in my life. I always thank God that I have food, a bed, and roof to live under. May God bless all those people who have the heart to reach out to the homeless!