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Giving A Helping Hand This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     Recently Ivolunteered to serve food at a homeless shelter with members of mychurch. I didn't really know what to expect. When I arrived, I sawpeople standing outside. Though I don't like to admit it, I didn't wantto go near them. I began to think about what kind of people they were;those who are homeless are usually considered drug users, criminals andrunaways who are dirty and have nowhere else to go. This perception iswrong.

At first, I thought some of those signing in werevolunteers too, but in fact they were there to spend the night. I becameconfused; they didn't look homeless. They wore nice clothing and werefriendly and polite. I was shocked. Instead of thinking of them as"bums," I began to imagine how they had become thisway.

Something horrible could happen to any of us, anytime.Although most of us have others to go to, some aren't that lucky. Mymind wandered as they passed through the line and I served them. I keptthinking of the simple, everyday things that could have left thesepeople homeless. I felt badly for them. Some were dressed in oldclothing that didn't even fit, but some were happy; they had hope thatthings would get better. Many had joined programs at the shelter to getmore education and job training. They really wanted to change, and forthat I admired them. Everyone has a story, everyone is different, andthat is what makes this world interesting.




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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