Yesterday afternoon The I Have a Name Project and Let's Be Better Humans campaign had planned on delivering cold water to our homeless neighbors. As temperatures in Phoenix climbed above 110 degrees we began loading the bus.
Then, a man whom we were familiar with, approached looking a bit disoriented, very disheveled, thin and gingerly walking across asphalt that can be up to 40 or 50 degrees warmer than the outside temperature– wearing only a pair of worn through socks.
I grabbed a water, walked toward Ryan and asked where his shoes were? He has an easy demeanor and with a hushed voice said, “They just wore out”.
The water for the street would have to wait. We decided to get Ryan in the car, out of the heat and find a pair of shoes and fresh clothes.
An hour-and-a-half later his smile says it all. Ryan has shoes, fresh socks, clean underwear, a shirt, new jeans and a hat to keep the oppressive Arizona sun at bay.
We made one last stop before taking him back near the shelter as Ryan hadn’t eaten all day. He wanted a Sprite and burrito from Taco Bell.
As I say my goodbye I’m thoughtful that our humble little Project cannot fix the ills of the world. But we can, with simple measures of kindness, make a difference, one soul at a time.
We encourage all that see this post to share it as a reminder of our common humanity and a duty to remember the man in need. - Jon Linton
If you'd like some ideas of how you can make a difference to someone living on the streets, please check out Jon's post 10 Thing You Can Do To Help The Homeless