A team from A&DS is joining 9,000 others in Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh, on the 9th of December for the World’s largest ever sleepout to raise funds and awareness about homelessness. In the run up to the event we asked those taking part to outline what motivated them to sign up. Here Sam Patterson tells his story:
Over the past few years I have developed a good relationship with “John the book” who is homeless. He who would sit outside The Lighthouse on Mitchell Lane where I work. I would walk past John twice a day. John is very polite and never asked for money – he spends his time reading to take his mind off of his circumstances, hence his nickname.
It is not my place to repeat the incredibly complicated circumstances that led to John being homeless, some of it is very personal, and I’m not comfortable only portraying half the story. However, I would like to covey how moved I am by his positivity and how upsetting it is that a series of external forces beyond his control could put somebody in such a vulnerable position.
Strike Up a Relationship
My occasional money is not enough to give John the opportunity he needs to get a home and the circumstances he needs to find employment. I believe that Social Bite is offering meaningful way to support those who are homeless: food, support, training, employment and lodgings at the Social Bite Village. I hope that at some point John can benefit from their support and accommodation.
I would encourage you to speak to the next homeless person you see and strike up a relationship, in my experience time is just as valuable as money.
Please consider supporting Sam and the A&DS team in reaching their fundraising target. You can make a donation here.