Homeless Hairy Hippie
Over the past week or two, my facebook had blown up about a homeless man in our town. Now I moved to the small rural town where I live from a big city so homeless wasn’t anything I haven’t heard about before. Actually, I have been in the same boat even lived in a homeless shelter at the age of 17. Anyways I started seeing friends posting about a homeless man standing on a corner a few blocks away from where I live, I was seeing posts about it on the local yard sale sites all over the place. I eventually learned that this man (his name is Timothy) was spreading homeless and hunger awareness to the 92 counties in Indiana, his home state!
When I connected with Timothy he had already moved on to the next county continuing his journey. He would stay one week in each county. So I was unfortunately not able to meet him face to face. But he gladly shared his story with me.
Timothy married his wife in October 1985 and she had a 3-year-old son. He searched for the boy’s biological father to gain permission to adopt him and the father turned over rights so he wouldn’t have to pay child support any longer. The couple also adopted two daughters who they had cared for in foster care and had a biological son of their own.
Timothy became homeless in November of 2013 due to a job loss. He had lost his apartment in shelbyville, Indiana and moved to Indianapolis for homeless services. While in Indianapolis he became seriously dissatisfied with the services rendered. In November 2014 he decided he didn’t have any answers but he DID have the ways and means to bring up the conversation everywhere he would go. One day he just started pushing “ol Dolly” on his journey to visit all 92 counties in his home state of Indiana to raise awareness for homelessness and hunger.
When timothy came to our town for his week to raise awareness he spent his first two nights sleeping in a deeply recessed entryway to a lawyer’s office on the main street. Local citizens paid for him to stay in a motel for his last five nights. This week he is in Shoals, Martin County (in Indiana) where Pastor Darrin Hovis of Hickory Ridge Church & Greater Works Ministry has opened up the basement of his church for Timothy to sleep in.
I asked Timothy what people can do to help the homeless. His answer was this “the best thing you can do is sit down & talk w/ them – SOOOOO many peeps stop & give ’em so much food they can’t possibly eat it all, some hand them a few bux, but SOOOO very few actually take time to get to KNOW them & find out what they REALLY need….”. He also told me that homeless people (as they are men, women and even children) need to be treated with respect and need to be uplifted more than anything. They need to be treated like REAL human beings “people of intelligence” he had said. Too many people assume that the homeless are just in need of food and a place to sleep. Timothy told me that homeless people are getting bought lots of food so much that they can’t even eat it all. They can use cash at their own discretion to buy what they NEED when they NEED it, he also said: “if you are uncomfortable giving them cash Stop and take a minute to find out what they really need, then go buy it for them”.
Amazingly while he was in Daviess county (where I live) he donated $2,493 to 9 different charities. The funds that were donated to the charities had come from residents of Daviess county trying to help one homeless man. Could you imagine the people in need we could help if we all donated a couple dollars to help? Or better yet, the next time we see a homeless person lets sit down with them and have a conversation.