Organization: Covenant House California
Activity: Youth Outreach
Today was a tough one for me, which you’ll likely be able to tell from some somewhat somber tone in the video. I went out looking for homeless youth around Hollywood and was rather shocked at what I saw and learned within a few miles of my house. In some way, I feel like I learned to see, or at least I learned how much I don’t, or choose not to, see everyday.
Los Angeles is not a pedestrian city, we are in our cars all the time. We speed down freeways and race along surface streets. This not only means you can completely avoid human contact (yes, sometimes a good thing), but it’s also really easy to avoid what’s going on around you. I realized today that I really don’t look at the people I drive by everyday. Instead, I am singing my favorite country songs or looking for my destination or talking on the phone (hands-free) or thinking about all I have to get done.
Let me tell you, when you actually start to look and see what is around you, you can discover a whole new place. Some of it great and some of it not. What I saw today, homeless youth, is tragic and difficult for me to even comprehend. But, it does exist right down the street and I can no longer ignore it or pretend it doesn’t exist. Fortunately, I also got to see first-hand how people are out there helping.
I have a challenge for you. Next time you are driving or walking around your town or city, get off the phone, turn off the radio, clear your head and look — really look — at what’s going on around you. I have a feeling you’re going to discover something new, I know I did. And, if it’s a problem that you discover, give some thought as to how you can be part of the solution, like the amazing folks at Covenant House California are doing every day.
Please watch and share with others.