Hopelessness of Homelessness | Hope

Homelessness does terrible things to the mind…

The hopelessness and the despair of homelessness eats away at the very core of a person’s personality when faced with the degradations and hardships involved with living on the streets. Even the strongest amongst us, when faced with these conditions, lose the basic self-esteem and self-respect that normally drives one to live a healthy life. Unfortunately, many turn to substance abuse as a means of escape from the harsh realities of their situation and to mask the pain and humiliation – even if only for brief moments of respite. The addiction cycle is hardest to break when the contributing factors that led to that addiction persist. It is unfortunate that precisely 80% of all homeless veterans qualify as having a substance abuse problem and/or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Every now and then there are brief moments of clarity when even those with the worst problems realize that something has to change. These small windows of opportunity occur only when the individual acknowledges the pointlessness of the cycle and actively reaches out for help. The immediate action of the VA Outreach Worker is to offer the homeless veteran a way out of poverty and desperation and inspire hope and transformation.