Debra Sinick

For Some Kirkland, Washington People, These are Desperate Times

In Kirkland News, Kirkland WA on November 21, 2008 at 6:29 pm

Today I was doing an errand at one of our local Kirkland stores and noticed a Kirkland policeman searching a man by the front door of the store. I assumed the man had been caught shoplifting.  He was taken away in the patrol car. When I paid for my purchases, I mentioned something to the cashier about what I had witnessed.  The cashier told me the man had been found rifling through the refrigerator in the break room looking for food. I was shocked and saddened that someone would have to resort to doing such a thing to find food.  It’s that desperate out there for some people, right in Kirkland’s backyard.

Throughout this month, we all can help people who are in dire straits by giving to Hopelink in the form of cash or with food donations.  Tomorrow in The Highlands the Cub Scouts will be collecting money or food at the kiosk by the 116th Avenue entrance to The Highlands from 10 AM to 1 PM for this month’s contest to see which neighborhood can collect the most for Hopelink.  The contest is a great, fun idea, but should only remind us that there are desperate people who will always need our help.  Please plan to give during the food drive and during the whole year.  The fun part would be if we win as a neighborhood, but the truly great part is we would be helping some people who are stuck right now.

How many times have you been asked for spare change? How many times have you seen people by the side of the road with signs asking for food or money? I know many people look away, even those of us who donate to causes such as Second Harvest and the Union Gospel Mission. We’ve been told by “the experts”if we give money to people out on the street, the money will be spent at the nearest bar.

Here’s a great book to read: 54 Ways You Can Help the Homeless, by Rabbi Charles A. Kroloff. Former President Jimmy Carter said of Rabbi Charles A. Kroloff’s book, “his book will inspire us to help eliminate homelessness.”

Here are some suggestions for things you can do to help from Rabbi Kroloff’s list:

Volunteer your professional talents.

Carry fast food certificates.

Publish shelter information.

Employ the homeless.

Imagine if we all did something simple and carried $5.00 or $10.00 fast food certificates in our pockets and gave them out to people who needed them. Even if you gave one certificate a month, this could be a big help to someone and it’s a good way to ensure your generosity is well spent. There are many disenfranchised people in this country and those of us who can help, should do so.


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