Pure Grace Bags
Pure Grace Bags are gift bags that we felt inspired to create and give to the homeless in our community. Everyone needs more grace demonstrated towards them and we really want to be used by God to remind people that He sees them and cares for them. Watch our video to learn more:
What's In A PGB?
Through years of experience and meeting, getting to know, learning from, befriending, and helping people living a homeless lifestyle, we have used that knowledge in choosing what to give:
1) Foot Health - this is very important and very hard to maintain in this lifestyle. I was told over and over that socks were one of the best gifts that could be given
2) Soft, non-perishable foods/toothbrush & toothpaste - dental hygiene is another important health factor yet in many circumstances a neglected area of one's health. Softer foods are easier to consume if someone has already lost a few or several teeth
3) Sweatshirt - because of where we live, just providing another new, clean layer of warmth
4) Other items - deodorant, gift card to Chick-fil-a, letter from God (based on what the Bible says, His love letter, to humans), letter from us, resource information for our community
5) Backpack - a new backpack can provide a new, clean source of carrying one's belongings
What do you believe about homelessness?
Through working at a homeless shelter, being the live-in director of a Women's Drug & Alcohol Home, meeting and befriending many people living in this lifestyle, I have DEFINITELY formed beliefs about it.
My beliefs have led me to stop doing two things in relation to helping people. 1) I do not give cash to anyone asking or in need - I only give money to people that I have a relationship and history with.
2) I do not put anyone up in a hotel/motel - this requires a very high liability in the sense that if anything happens in the room, illegal or destructive, ultimately I am liable because my name and credit card are tied to that room (and I can be charged with a crime).
I also do not believe that giving everyone who is homeless a home will EVER end homelessness. I have met PLENTY of people who do NOT want to be housed. That even the structure of a house is TOO MUCH structure for them.
I have met people in this lifestyle who make more money in a day than I EVER have. I tried to help a young woman one day who was flying a sign near a freeway entrance outside a mall - she told me there is NO WAY she would leave that spot because she makes $1000-$2000/day there.
What I DO believe in is demonstrating acts of kindness towards people and offering genuine friendship to people. I no longer seek to take on other people's problems and work harder at them than the person with the problem, but I am entirely willing to help people who want change in their lives. Otherwise, if someone doesn't want to change then help is not on the table, friendship is.