Try volunteering to create solutions for social problems

Why not put your passion and drive to use where it will do the most good?

Try volunteering to create solutions for social problems

Try volunteering to create solutions for social problems

Although I no longer participate in social media (my life is much calmer), I’m told a number of folk are wondering why churches aren’t housing homeless people in our area. While I’m pleased people know churches are places where hungry souls are nurtured, supported and fed, I’m a bit surprised to find they want people to be housed in them too.

I’m also told there’s a lot of finger pointing going on about homelessness in our community. Shelter workers “not doing enough”, folk without shelter using doorways for bathrooms, people self medicating on the streets, people in need of medication acting strangely, fearfully, angrily. People living in fear. People being abused. People having their temporary shelters torn away and dumped in dumpsters. Lots of ‘shouting’ and blaming and accusing on social media. Lots of demands that the walking wounded heal themselves, that the shelter expand its capacity, that folk living without shelter find another place to live without shelter. It’s understandable, we are in crisis.

Churches and shelters and campaigns to drive people living without homes out of our area are not the answer. I know many people living here believe that and are doing all they can to offer support, care and nurture to their neighbours. With or without homes. What about those who are so adept at using social media? Those commentators, photographers and video artists who highlight and call out the misery around us? Those who seem boiling to the point of overflow in outrage and anger. What could they do?

I have a couple of ideas: If you think the church in your area could do more, why not drop in and find out how to help? If you believe the shelter could do more, why not call up the Canadian Mental Health Association and find out what they need? If you think people living with trauma should be cared for and supported why not call up the Health Authority and ask what they need? Best of all, if you think safe, secure, affordable and supported housing should be a basic human right, especially for the working poor, seniors without adequate pensions, folk living with injury, and others you deem ‘deserving’, then why not insist our Federal and Provincial Governments do something besides making announcements?

Why not put your passion and drive to use where it will do the most good? Why not help out in some real, tangible, community building way? Who knows, the life you change might even be your own.

Keith Simmonds

Duncan

Just Posted

Capitals’ Kahlil Fontana blueliner evades Alberni Valley Bulldogs’ Ethan Hersant during second-period B.C. Hockey League Island Division action at the Alberni Valley Multiplex on Saturday, April 10, 2021. (Susan Quinn/Black Press Media)
Cowichan Capitals go out with a bang

Caps finish BCHL season strong with 6-1 thumping of Clippers

The MS Society flag flies at Duncan city hall to mark MS Awareness Month. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Duncan and CVRD help mark MS Awareness Month

MS Walk scales back, but fundraisers are still vital for MS Society

“Keeping fit for Mother’s Day: Participants of Cowichan Lake Recreation’s Mother’s Day hiking event make their way down the Trans Canada Trail, Sunday, May 8. The morning event later wrapped up with snacks and prizes.” (Tyler Clarke/Lake Cowichan Gazette May 11, 2011)
Flashback: Bears, elk, salmon, candidates, and lumber graders

This week around Cowichan Lake in years gone by

Sign up to fundraise to help those affected by dementia. (Submitted)
Not too late for Cowichan residents to join Alzheimer’s Walk

Set a walking or fitness goal for May and raise funds for the Alzheimer Society of B.C.

Robert’s column
Robert Barron Column: Poachers in forest reserve should be treated harshly

‘Poachers need to be rounded up and prosecuted as soon as possible’

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

A vial of AstraZeneca vaccine is seen at a mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Calgary, Alta., Thursday, April 22, 2021. Dr. Ben Chan remembers hearing the preliminary reports back in March of blood clots appearing in a handful of European recipients of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Science on COVID, VITT constantly changing: A look at how doctors keep up

While VITT can represent challenges as a novel disorder, blood clots themselves are not new

Poached trees that were taken recently on Vancouver Island in the Mount Prevost area near Cowichan, B.C. are shown on Sunday, May 10, 2021. Big trees, small trees, dead trees, softwoods and hardwoods have all become valuable targets of tree poachers in British Columbia as timber prices hit record levels. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne.
Tree poaching from public forests increasing in B.C. as lumber hits record prices

Prices for B.C. softwood lumber reached $1,600 for 1,000 board feet compared with about $300 a year ago

The warm weather means time for a camping trip, or at least an excursion into nature. How much do you know about camps and camping-related facts? (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: Are you ready to go camping?

How many camp and camping-related questions can you answer?

On Friday, May 14 at Meadow Gardens Golf Club in Pitt Meadows, Michael Caan joined a very elite club of golfers who have shot under 60 (Instagram)
Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

The first Black judge named to the BC Supreme Court, Selwyn Romilly, was handcuffed at 9:15 a.m. May 14 while walking along the seawall. (YouTube/Screen grab)
Police apologize after wrongly arresting B.C.’s first Black Supreme Court Justice

At 81 years old, the retired judge was handcuffed in public while out for a walk Friday morning

Queen Elizabeth II and Clive Holland, deputy commonwealth president of the Royal Life Saving Society, top left, virtually present Dr. Steve Beerman, top right, with the King Edward VII Cup for his drowning-prevention work. Tanner Gorille and Sarah Downs were honoured with Russell Medals for their life-saving resuscitation. (Buckingham Palace photo)
Queen presents Vancouver Island doctor with award for global drowning prevention

Dr. Steve Beerman receives Royal Life Saving Society’s King Edward VII Cup at virtual ceremony

Most Read