Walk On By; They Are Fake



Have you ever given money to a homeless person one day only to wonder if you might see that same person getting into his car and driving away a few hours later?  Wouldn’t this change your thoughts of giving again?  This has happened to my daughter at one time and forced her to have negative thoughts about dropping that small amount of money into the next cup of someone on the street.

This situation is rare and here are some statistics I have found.

The Canadian Homeless Research Network (CHRN) reports:

  • At least 200,000 Canadians experience homelessness in any given year.
  • At least 150,000 Canadians a year use a homeless shelter at some point.
  • At least 30,000 Canadians are homeless on any given night.
  • At least 50,000 Canadians are part of the “hidden homeless” on any given night — staying with friends or relatives on a temporary basis as they have nowhere else to go

These statistics are staggering but something this society has to face.

In the small town in which I live I have never seen a homeless person sitting on a downtown sidewalk, begging for change from a passersby!  We are fortunate to have a wonderful Help Centre which is an amazing organization ready to help anyone who is in need of assistance.

People can be pushed into homelessness for various reasons – extreme poverty, mental illness,  addictions, family violence or abuse.

The good news is that there has been progress in several provinces in Canada at the provincial and municipal level to reduce the number of homeless Canadians.  Low income housing  has to be one solution as the number of homeless shelters is on the increase.

The bottom line; and my personal opinion is; when I see a homeless person lying or sitting on the sidewalk, I will definitely offer them a cup of coffee and a sandwich!   Walking on past is not an option for me.  How can we know if that might have been us if our lives had been affected by the same situations these poor souls were faced with?



Photo provided by; Google Search; (https://www.google.ca/search?q=Photos+of+Homeless)


8 Comments Add yours

  1. gc says:

    Great article Pat. This is the time of year when “scammers” make their presence known on the streets of both large city streets and smaller townships. They are not the needy but the greedy.They take advantage of the average person’s generous side.

    I was once approached by a man carrying a red plastic gas can. He told me that his vehicle had “just run out of gas” and would appreciate it if I could give him two dollars towards the cost of the gas. He added that his wife and child were in the car waiting for him on a side road near the mall. A very convincing story. His was a well rehearsed presentation..

    I bought his emotionally laden cover story and gave him the two dollars. As I was entering the super market one of the store employees told me that this same man and his hard luck story had been played the past three weeks. Store management had asked him to not harass customers. He was persistent. He did not have a car or a wife and child they had discovered.The man was a consummate con artist.

    Don’t let the “street beggars” with their hard luck stories work you emotionally. They are after your money and do not represent the truly desperate people who are lacking financial means to exist.

    Pass these artful dodgers right on by. Give your money to established charities to help these folks. The greedy only help to rob the needy.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Patricia says:

    Thank you so much gc for your story. We definitely have to offer help to the homeless is productive ways. Possibly by contacting a local Shelter for them or giving them information. I would offer them coffee or water and maybe a sandwich. It’s a very difficult call isn’t it? Thank you for visiting! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I do like that idea, giving them a bottle of water. I have bought food, given my leftovers as I exit a restaurant, and given money. I am more hesitant in giving money.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Patricia says:

      I have given money in the past too Barbara but someone told me that I should give food instead. Thank you for visiting today. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Laurie says:

    My oldest son has lived in a large city since leaving to attend college a few years ago. He learned quickly to provide a food or drink rather than funds. Had one same fellow come up to him more than once over the years, even just to talk if son was extra low on low (college) funds. Sometimes people need an ear too.


    1. Patricia says:

      Yes, you are right Laurie! I wouldn’t be able to pass by without doing something. Thank you for visiting.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Singledust says:

    Interesting read and thanks for sharing this information. On my travels I had seen what you have described but never knew there were scammers too. just to share a little of a huge problem in Malaysian society is the syndicated use of little children and poor immigrants to prey on the hearts and kindness of citizens and tourists to the country’s popular places. the scams and methods are too long to mention here and you would be overwhelmed by some of the stories we hear. Authorities struggle with NGO’s to find a solution.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Patricia says:

      Thank you for this! I also saw children being used to beg on the street in Mexico once on a visit there! It is sad but true! Have a great evening! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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