I am a daughter, aunt, sister and friend. I have a roof to protect me, a bed of my own, a seat in an institution and a shot at a career. Many individuals don’t have what I have, and those that do, take it for granted.
For those who don’t, the reasons are endless. It can be due to an unfortunate turn of events, choice of decision(s), or the enforcenment of another. Many of these individuals take to the streets, or move from place to place, with no home they can call their own.
This section of JLS is my blog space for a project in my Nonviolent Communication course. We are each assigned to choose a project that makes us, a source of nonviolent/peaceful communication within the next 3-6 weeks. I chose to do my project on homelessness because it will bring a personal change in myself, as well to others.
My friend had actually suggested the idea because of an incident that happened recently. We were on my way home from a night out on the town, when we noticed a drunk man walking towards us. He was notably drunk because of his stumbling posture and the closer we got the more scared I became. I’ll be honest here, the main reason for my fear was because he looked homeless, which to me automatically associates with the lack of cleanliness. When I think back to it, the stigma I had on him overpowered any other feeling I could have had towards him. For all I know, he could’ve had alcohol poisoning which I neglected to help.
This is where this project comes in. I want to change the way I think about them and create change in others. All too often, we as individuals let stigmas take over how we should see people, and that is to see them for who they are, not how they look. It does not just happen with the homeless, it happens with culture, religion, individuals with disabilities, and people with HIV/AIDs. By alleviating the negative judgements, I am becoming a source of nonviolent communication as well as enduring others I know to do the same. Just like violence, peace is contagious as well. If the LGBTQ can make change in the views of others, perhaps I can make that change for the individuals that are often ignored and feared of. LS