Homeless Ain’t Home | Gayle Bell

In our journeys, we have met people with amazing talents. Many have computer or skilled trades; but are unable to get employment.  Businesses are leery to hire them.  Because of cultural differences, or individuals who identify as GLBTQY are not always welcome or safe inside of intuitions.  Some have beloved pets they do not want to put away.  Some have difficulty finding work because of previous jail time.  One woman; former military has a degree in psychology; giving up the bottle has been challenging. 

Our church tries to help with obtaining ids, shelters, recovery houses, but because of the challenges of the individual, the cycle continues.  Our church feeds over 440 people a month.  We provide bagged food for them as well.  Our weekly brunch continues to have new faces at our door.  We implore our church members to make casseroles, beans, soup and other hot items for them. 

We distribute clothes from our thrift store. We rarely have hygiene items for them.  Even if we did, we cannot provide a place for them to clean up.  Our local grocery store will not allow them to use the restroom.  We are not able to open ours to them because of previous drug use, or sexual abuse in our church bathroom.

Betty was homeless on the streets of Portland and Dallas for 5 years. She was following her former partner whose alcohol abuse kept them out of shelters.  Portland had coffee houses and other places for the homeless to obtain a meal, provide recreations and showers so they did not have to be on the streets.  People who had food stamps could barter for other goods and services.  She advised there was a place every block that would serve 3 meals a day to the individuals.  Betty created a cookbook there; the proceeds went directly to the food pantry.  That is what we are trying to do with ours

My family and I moved to San Francisco to escape an abusive marriage.  Me and my 2 kids were lucky, there was Raphael House; they had a door you could close and call your own.  I was fighting crack and alcohol abuse.  With my kids love, I got clean and sober when we came back to Dallas. 
From Cookbook, Pending Publication benefiting St Matthews Food Pantry

©2021 Gayle Bell
All rights reserved

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