Yellow and orange overtakes the sky in San Francisco. Not over Pier 39 or Ghirardelli Square, but the Tenderloin district of San Francisco, where crime, poverty, and isolation are three constant companions. I dawdle through the streets with a group of about seven other people from my mission trip, looking for those in need of food, blankets, or--most commonly--a conversation.
I didn’t notice him at first, but as I looked back over my shoulder, I saw him. Rob. Sitting in a chair in front of a restaurant, by himself and watching those that passed by. I walked up to him and asked how he was doing. The conversation we had lasted over an hour. Throughout it I learned that I was the first person to talk to Rob in years, and he was completely isolated from any family or friends. He told me about the apartment he had been living in, how he was neighbors with addicts and thieves, and how he could not afford to go anywhere else. He wanted so badly to get out of the Tenderloin and to have a better life. He wept, telling me that he thought nobody would ever notice him again, and seemed distraught when I had to go. I checked on him the next day, and he was so much happier.
Kindness isn’t something that is hard to practice, but it is something that affects everyone every single day.
I have experienced kindness throughout my entire live, both on the giving and receiving ends, and seen the impact it can have on people of all ages. As a younger child, I would get happy from just someone telling me I was nice. Growing older, I have experienced kindness and its effects both on the giving and receiving end. Hearing that someone thinks I look nice or that they thought of me brings me joy, just as being the reason for someone’s smile or laughter brings me an uncomparable amount of joy. It does not take a lot of work to be kind, but it does have a huge payoff for all parties involved.
I believe in a world where kindness overcomes hatred. I believe in a world where others come first. I believe in the positive effect kindness has in this world.
I believe in kindness.
Thank you to everyone who came out to the car wash on October 22nd! We were able to raise over $1,000, which is going to become 90 outreach kits for the homeless!
Special thanks to all the volunteers who made this happen!
On November 4th, HR visited the Loaves and Fishes diner to hand out hygiene kits to guests. We handed out a total of 80 hygiene kits and had a few great conversations.
While handing out boxes, we saw a kid who looked about like a 3rd grader walking through the diner with his mom. This kid was your typical 3rd grader: goofy, funny, and bit hard to handle at times. Something was a bit off though, it was raining and was about 40 degrees outside, and this kid didn’t have any socks on. Our team stepped up and handed him and his mom a hygiene kit, which both held a 3-pack of socks.
Its moments like these that are the reason HR exists. It’s the small connections, like keeping a child’s feet warm, that keeps us going.
Without your support, we couldn’t be where we are now, and our team thanks you so much for all of your generous donations.
The future is bright! Let’s continue working together in this fight against poverty!