The weather in the UK has dropped suddenly in the last week, with snow covering wide parts of the country. The weather in the UK is nothing compared to what is currently happening in the USA. In the USA in the last week temperatures in Chicago have had lows of -32C with a wind chill factor making it feel closer to -45C – that is colder than Antartica, Alaska and the North Pole.
Homeless people living on the streets are those worse to suffer with the lucky ones having a tent to shelter in whilst many must brave the cold conditions with nothing but a blanket and the clothes they wear. That’s when one mystery person paid for over 70 homeless people around Chicago to stay in a hotel for the rest of the week. The unnamed donor picked up the bill for these people – what a selfless act. Times like these are when people pull together best and show what true human spirit is all about.
In these cold times please make sure if you see any homeless people on the streets advise them of what options are available for them. As our readers are from all over the country, here are just a few options that are available to help those in need this winter.
- If you see someone in need of urgent medical attention, dial 999 immediately.
- Let rough sleepers know that emergency shelters are open as they may be unaware that the extra services are running.
- Send an alert to Streetlink, an app run by a charity of the same name which connects rough sleepers in England and Wales to local agencies who can help find them a warm bed for the night.
- Buy a rough sleeper a blanket, a cup of tea, or a hot meal. “UK homelessness charities are almost unanimous on the question of giving money: it is better not to,” says The Guardian, but instead ask a homeless person what you can buy to help.
- A friendly chat is always welcome.
- You can also offer to donate money to charities working to end homelessness or volunteer and campaign with them directly. “Your power to help homeless people extends far beyond individual actions and encounters,” says the charity Shelter
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