Human services Program and Profession
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•After viewing the California Homeless Youth Project’s videos, discuss your reactions. What did you know about this issue before you watched the videos? How has your awareness of the issue changed as a result of what you learned?
•Do you think others are aware?
•How can human service professionals work to educate the public about homeless children and poverty in America?
•What are the negative stereotypes of the homeless and where do you think they originated? Hello Professor and Classmates,
After going through the California Homeless youth project’s video, i was perturbed and disturbed about the presence of such energetic young men on our streets and being homeless. I pass by people who are homeless and staying on the streets but this had never hit my mind about what happens to the. I never took a moment to think what could be putting them in the streets and why this people could not just find a home and enjoy their lives in peace.deep in my mind i never thought America was this poor and so many people could not afford a decent meal on their own and had to be supported by the government. I used to think the people on the streets are just lazy and due to this laziness they could not afford a decent life, but this has now changed. How this people performed their day to day routines bothered me, the need to shower, wash clothes, have a place to study, have a sense of belonging all shocked me.I realized there are so many more reasons why people can be homeless.
Among the reasons i appreciated most was domestic violence, disabilities,lack of accessible healthcare,poverty,social exclusion, mental disorders,mortgages and lack of payment and inability to afford a home.i now understand that it s not just laziness and other superficial issues that cause homelessness but also other reasons. Therefore any homeless person i meet on the streets, all this reasons should suffice. It is our responsibility as citizens to help this people get to their lives once more by providing them with the needed protection and listening to them.this people face face a lot of problems including hostility from government officials, medical problems,hygiene and sanitation services,obtaining of food,reduced access to healthcare,limitation of access to education, rejection and discrimination from these people and loss of relationships with other people, not being eligible for employment and many more problems.
The ability of the California youth group to initiate activities in order to be self sufficient is unique. Their efforts towards finding a solution to homelessness is in the right direction. With involvement of humanitarian organizations and religious groups i believe this issue can be tackled. Their needs to be a clear cut objective between the government, organizations and churches. This is through facilitation of employment opportunities, donation of clothes and provision of temporary shelter places to this people. Others include increasing the minimm wage so that they can carter for the moderate expenses of this people.
Most people are not aware about this group of on the streets, they just look at them like its normal for them to lead the kind of lives they are leading. Most people stereotype them either as being lazy, poor, ignorant and such which is very bad indeed. If only they understood the varied reasons why this people are on the streets and what they are facing as a result of being on the streets, probably they would be treated in a much better way.Human service professional can therefore work by educating people about hits cadre of humans whose numbers are swelling each day. They can do this through using the mass media, or social media and passing information regarding the homeless. Sensitization will help reduce discrimination of this people.
Most homeless people are stereotyped as being criminals and many who are criminalized have only performed status crimes because they have been found loitering, sleeping and trespassing. This crimes cannot be avoided since one is homeless, he has to loiter, sleep on the streets and trespass in order to look for food. This stereotype creates unwanted fear of the homeless people and it makes even charitable organizations fear dealing with the directly . there is also a misconception tat all this people are drug addicts. This stereotypes closes a lot of doors for those willing to assist because hey feel the money may be used by the homeless to enhance their drinking lifestyles.
Other stereotypes say that these people are too lazy to work on their own and merely want to be assisted. This is quite wrong like we have seen there are so many reasons why people find themselves on the streets. Other people regard them to be mentally ill, this is dangerous because only about a quarter of this people are mentally ill. Some people stereotype them as being a lifestyle pegged on poor choices hence the consequence being homeless. All this stereotype originate from a handful of incidences which have occurred before and homeless people being linked to them. The generalizations are unfounded because its not all homeless people who participate in criminal activities. Therefore , this creates a different perspective about the homeless.