I woke this morning all excited because I was going to see my mates. You see we were putting a meeting on to plan the next 'Mates helping Mates' BBQ which is going to be on the 1st July. Don't know the venue yet but in the city or maybe Musgrave Park again.
I was beaming shaking hands and chatting about everyone helping more and more homeless people. A lot of great idea's came and really the goal is to make these BBQ'S bigger and better which helps even more people. One great one was we are going to make posters to put up at lodges and food vans around the city. I can't believe I didn't think of it, but that's why we are have meetings like today, to get fresh idea's.
This is going to seem like a few stories in one but it's the only way I think I can write it.
Now I always say I don't write everything about things I do to help homeless, but this is one of them times were I'm not saying what good I did, but others too.
While at the meeting Alicia and Steve (great people) rolled up with her wheelchair and had 6 sleeping bags and 6 back-packs for me to hand out to homeless after the meeting. Telling me that and great person named Colleen had bought them to be handed out to homeless before the winter hits. (on twitter @dinkumdusty )
Now I want to say how great is Colleen. I'm not sure if I have meet her but if I haven't I'd like too. This person spent a lot of money buying sleeping bags and back-packs for people she will most likely never meet. Just the fact that they needed help she is there. Now if anyone was A's in my book that really is up there with the best in my book. So please if you do the twitter thing, please contact her and say how great she is because I just heard she's going through a tough time now.
The meeting was ending when a couple (Denise and Dave) said they would help carry and hand out the sleeping bags and back-packs with my wife and I. Let me say I was so happy at first because I didn't want to carry them all on my own. Now I have known Denise and Dave for a year now, I wrote about them when we both did the 'Be Brave and Shave'. We both collected $2,000 each and got the shave at the same time. In fact that's when we meet. (Getting head shaved on stage. Ha ha)
Walking walking, we went to King George Square and meet our first homeless person. As it turned out he turned up at our last 'Mates helping Mates' BBQ and knew who I was. He sleeps on the streets and told me he had clothes and things in a locker at the 139 club. ( They let homeless keep things there in lockers so they don't lose clothes and things)
I talked to him for a few minutes and then handed him a sleeping bag and back-pack and left saying “have a good day” knowing I still had 5 more sleeping bags and back-packs to hand out.
Walking through the mall I didn't see any homeless at all. I really couldn't believe it. So the 4 of us headed towards The Botanical Gardens at the end of Albert St. Just before reaching the park we came across “Rain” yes that's his name or at least the name he gave me. Rain told me he was only 16 years old and from what I understood he's being homeless for a while now. He said he moves around and just spent 3 months in the valley.
Now sometimes in this type of thing I'm rolling a magazine up and hitting them on the head for being dumb and saying it's not fun being homeless with your mates, but this guy wasn't saying how fun it was being homeless and didn't put across anything like that at all. If anything, he had the look of giving up. I had to go but I can assure everyone I will be meeting him again to spend a lot more time with him and get the whole story and maybe help if I can. I mean he's only a 16 years old kid and should be having the time of his life and everything in life great, not sleeping on the streets not knowing where his next meal is coming from.
Then the 4 of us walked through The Botanical Gardens looking for homeless people and then through the Queen St Mall. That's a long walk. Ha ha. But no homeless anywhere that I noticed. I even said “ I do such a good job that there's none left” It didn't last long because as we got to the end of the Mall and I noticed a guy I had bough heaps of meals for in the past. My 'Pie and Coke days'.
I walked over and just started talking and asking if I can give him a sleeping bag and back-pack and would he use it. Now this guy is well know by a lot of people in the city because he is always going through bins and getting food and drinks people throw away. Not only did he take the sleeping bag and back-pack but for the first time ever, even after I've bought him lunch at least 50 times he handed out his hand to shake and told me his name “David” I'm not going to say it brought a tear to my eyes but I will say it came close. In my eyes he was starting to trust me and let me say that's a great start.
Leaving David the 4 of us walked to the next corner and just waited and to be honest just had a rest when I notice David opening the sleeping bag and checking it out and repacking it. He done that 2-3 times (not really sure) but the whole time he had a huge smile and to be honest the best words I can think of is “he thought it was Christmas” the 4 of us beaming with pride from a distance but with 3 sleeping bags and back-packs still to hand out.
Now the reason we headed for King George Square in the first place is because through the week I had seen 5young guys sleeping on the chairs in the underground bus way through the week and thought I could help them too. So we went back there and as it was they were there. Well 3 guys and a girl. I asked “if they were the guys that slept on the chairs in the bus-way” I knew the answer but I needed a way to talk to them. They said they were and I asked if I could give them sleeping bags and back-packs because it's getting colder.
All I remember is lot's of “WOO HOO'S” and smiles all around.
Minutes later I was saying goodbye to Dave and Denise and to be honest at that every moment I couldn't have been more prouder. I spent time with great friends and my wife helping people and it wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for Colleen in the first place helping.
That's what I did today. I'm not special you could too. Maybe that will encourage others to help people down on there luck.
Thank you for reading my blog and please share with others as I'm sure sometimes it may help others to think about others too.
I hope you have a great day.
Grant the Polite Guy.