Connect the Dots Blog

This has to be the case right? How else do you explain the lack of help for people in their own backyard, yet so many are quick to help someone 10,000 miles away? Yeah, this post is snarky, but for a good reason. To make a point.
If you've spent even 10 minutes with me you know what a huge dog person I am. Friends, family members, former coworkers and even clients know the story of my beloved Baxter who I said goodbye to last March after 16 years. So it stands to reason I would be on top of dog rescues, right? Of course....but it got me thinking. Why isn't there the same thing for people?
Over the past two years, Americans from every part of the country have responded enthusiastically to the call to welcome Afghan families, Ukrainians displaced by war, and others fleeing persecution.
For a long time, I have wondered about individuals and organizations doing things for their particular causes. Did they really do it to help, or was it more driven to make them feel better about themselves?
It's an ugly word. Eviction is a brutal process for anyone who has had to suffer it. In one fell swoop, a tenant, who by definition, doesn’t own their place of residence, has everything ripped out from underneath of them. They come home to a locked door, usually losing their belongings in the process.
No two people experience homelessness the same way. Some have a mental health diagnosis; some do not. Some are living with addiction, others are not. Some spend each night in a shelter, while others sleep in doorways, cars, or encampments.
Most people have a cause they are passionate about. They want to get involved. They want to do more. I found my cause twenty-eight years ago. I saw this great Dennis Miller monologue that changed my perspective and started me on the path to my goal.
Every time there's a disaster somewhere in the world, the U.S. jumps into action to help. Whether it's refugees in Ukraine or the heartbreaking devastation out of Turkey and Syria with last week's earthquake, our military and private sectors join forces to help alleviate the suffering.
I attended a virtual public meeting today on "Housing and Homelessness in Oklahoma," where they discussed how to use Federal funds for local initiatives. A couple of things irritated the hell out of me…as often happens.
The New York Times just ran this long article about the annual PointinTime (PIT) count for the homeless. Besides covering this annual activity from four different cities, it also dives into the challenges and roadblocks encountered by everyone trying to end homelessness.
Someone who is experiencing a crisis needs the basic human right of a roof over their head, THEN you can address the challenges they are facing that is a roadblock to their return to normalcy and a productive life. 
Myths about homelessness are universal. It doesn't matter what country you are from, homelessness exists and a lot of people don't understand that true nature of those affected. Here are some examples of what people think in different countries...