With Water in abundance in Calgary, a beautiful glistening Bow River, it may surprise you to hear that our homeless are dehydrated. The causes of this dehydration may be symptomatic of a bigger social problem as we have discovered, yet steps to ensure access to fresh Water go restricted. If you or I wanted fresh Water, we could most of the time easily access it. Whether it being at a public fountain, or just asking a near by business. Our homeless have more troubles. As homeless people continue to be targeted as “un-wanted guests” accessing life giving fresh Water becomes quite the task. Some would suggest, why not use the bathroom tap. We would suggest this too is quite the problem, when being targeted how does one even access the bathroom. Discrimination still plays a role in our culture whether we want to admit it or not.
During these high heats, especially this Fridays forecast of +37, bottled Water is of high need for the homeless. With roughly 3000 homeless in Calgary every day this heat wave could mean life or death for those most vulnerable. Lately every Wednesday outreach event, our BeTheChangeYYC team has handed out 200+ bottles of Water. A lot of the time our homeless are showing symptoms of heat exhaustion, which can lead to heat stroke and can be fatal if gone untreated. Donating bottles of Water to any helping homeless agency is a huge support. Some of the agencies include, Alpha House, The Mustard Seed, and of course our Helping Homeless Outreach Team
With homeless individuals being stigmatized often Water becomes inaccessible except for those able to access at shelters or through groups such as our selves. We would like to see more business open their washrooms to the homeless, such as Starbucks has done for everyone. Simple steps like this could ensure fresh water and washroom privileges for all. Without a community like us caring, often these societal issues continue. We need more loving people to stand up and ask for simple human rights, like fresh water, and washrooms for all. In the 21st Century I never thought we would be asking for something as simple as water, but our simple human needs that most of us can access anytime, and take for granted, are huge tasks for others in our own city. With support from Calgary and our local communities we can change the face of homelessness. If you the reader starts with something as simple as showing this story to a local business it could impact their awareness for the better. We can all do something as little as keep a extra bottle of water with us to hand out to those in need. If you find someone vulnerable, and dehydrated please contact the DOAP Team, if required call EMS.
We aren’t super heroes. We are just average ordinary people trying to make the world a better place. It all starts with you. Join us in our mission and lets all lend a hand to helping the homeless and ending poverty. We don’t need to tax our system unnecessarily for something as simple as fresh water. Human rights & privileges are for all.
Written by CS for BeTheChangeYYC Blog