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Old 06-27-2011, 07:06 PM   #15
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Thank you for this post. I have similar experiences before and honestly I have been close to being in that situation myself. We can all make a difference in each other's lives with a connection, eye to eye, soul to soul. I know you will be looking for that opportunity again to ask the person's name, maybe a little conversation (sometimes this can last quite a long time as they usually do not get anyone who cares to ask, so it is a bonus for them to feel like they matter), but don't feel guilty that it slipped your mind this time...as the connection was felt by him too.

You sound like a good-hearted person. Good-on-ya mate!

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Old 06-27-2011, 07:15 PM   #16
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There but for the grace of God go I. I've been really rich and really poor so I know what it is like. Most people are only 3 months away from being homeless. Most people don't realize what it's like and why it happens and most don't think it will happen to them. One long stay in a hospital, one layoff, or one change to bad luck and "your life is over". When you are down it's very hard to get back up. I once met the ex governor of Delaware in a CG who was homeless and he said "if it can happen to me it can happen to anyone".

Thank you for helping and giving something to someone less fortunate. There is real life and your life. We all on this forum are lucky to have what we have. I'm sure some of us will fall into the "real life" category and know what it's like to sleep next to a dumpster hungry and cold/hot. Hopefully someone like you will help them out if only for a day.

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Old 06-27-2011, 07:40 PM   #17
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My wife and I were sitting in our favorite Mexican restaurant one Friday evening. I noticed a gentleman sitting at a table and he looked a little "out of place," so to speak. I know the owner of the restaurant and when he stopped by I asked him if the gentleman was homeless. He acknowledge that he was, and I stated that we would like to pay for his meal. The owner said, no, that it was on the house. Wanting to do something, on the way out I stopped and asked, "Where are you eating breakfast tomorrow?" He replied, "Burger king, they are the cheapest around." I handed him some money and said, "Breakfast is on us." He thanked us, and we departed. I never saw him around again. I wish him well.

When visiting my son and daughter-in-law (plus grandkids) we had the opportunity to assist in their church providing dinner to anyone who came to the church. No strings attached. This was in Newport, Rhode Island. The meal consisted of roast beef, mashed potatoes, vegetables, and desert, along with soft drinks, coffee, etc. We were all volunteers. All a person had to do was show up, sit down, and we acted as wait persons. They got whatever they asked for, and whatever quantity they liked. Seconds, thirds, etc., was no problem. All of the food was donated, the volunteers cooked it, and some was pre-cooked. It was an amazing experience. There was no question asked of anyone who came in to eat. They were served. The church did this once a month, but the more interesting thing in this city was that this was done every night of the week, in a different location. Those in need just new where that location was - it was not a published thing, but the number of homeless that showed up at each was large.

A big thanks to the Newport, Rhode Island business owners, churches, and volunteers.
Wayne MSGT USMC (Ret) & Earlene (CinCHouse)
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It is what it is, and then it is what you make of it.
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Old 06-28-2011, 03:16 AM   #18
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This has been a great thread and I appreciate everyone who has shared their experiences about helping those less fortunate then them!

I, myself, have given money to those when the opportunity presented itself. The last time I can remember was some time late last year. I was staying w/a friend and was house sitting for him while he was out of the country.

He gave me $100 dollars before leaving and a few days later, I went down to the local McD's for lunch. As I was coming out after eating, I saw a car in the parking lot w/a family of three (Man, woman & young child) and a sign saying something alone the lines of them being homeless and losing their house. There 4-door sedan (late 80's buick I believe) was pretty much loaded w/their possessions.

anyway, I get into my car and, as usual, went to drop the change from my pocket into the ash-tray....then it hit me!

I pulled the astray out, got out of my car and walked over the driver's side and asked the man to roll down his window! I poured the change into his hand and said something along the lines of "here's what I have...it's yours!"....I think there was something like $8 or $10 dollars in change, as much of it was quarters...

And I got back into my car, put the astray back and drove off. Funny thing was I didn't have this feeling of doing something special...but more like...it was my job, because I know if it wasn't for the friend who I was house sitting for, who I've known since childhood, I myself was a stone throw away from living in my car as well months earlier!

Here's an interesting video I came across some time ago, which I think fits in well w/this thread:

YouTube - ‪The Power of Words‬‏

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Old 06-28-2011, 05:44 AM   #19
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Mr. Haller, If you took the time to sit down and write that entire story out in a book from start to finish it'd be a best seller and likely wind up on film. While this thread is primarily focused on what God has provided in "unique" opportunities, your's is a story I'd like to read in it's entirety. We often feel motivated to pass judgement on the circumstances that have birthed an individual into the state we find them. Adversity is the test of fire that allows us to see the gold and the dross of humanity. Apparently you have seen a lot of gold and it's worth noting.
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Old 06-28-2011, 06:13 AM   #20
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Hi All,

Wow what a great thread, and it also shows what great folks are on this site and what type of folks RVers are! I mean less then 9 hours since it was started and I am the 20th post of good things!!! I also have a story to tell! Two years ago while I was traveling from NJ to Fla, to be lucky enough to speand winter warm with friends. I stopped in Newport TN. I asked the lady in the campgrund office about a church I could go to the next morning. She told me that there were a few different ones to choose from. One of them was a Bikers Church and since before while traveling and not being all that dressed up and looked at and questiond about my Sun dress. I decided to go to the Bikers Church, since I new they would not care that I was in Jeans, T-shirt cowboyhat & Boots! I was right and was not only welcomed in to the church, I was also invited to stay after and enjoy the meal they all shared after the service. Also towards the end of the service the Pastor brought forward a youg girl maybe 22 at best who was pregnat and was trying to get home to be back with here parents. She did not have any money and needed to get back home. So he said todays collection was all going to get her a bus ticket! Well as I walked up to give something and reached in my pocket I only had a $20.00 bill and with out even thinking I handed it to hear and said good luck! I know it does not sound like much, however it was all the money I had for the next week, till my pension check came in again! The feeling I got from doing that was way more then $20 worth !!!

Remember All: LIVE, LAUGH & ENJOY !!!!!!
AL, & Mickey "The Boston"! Silver Springs, FL Camping since 1967 and RVing since 1990! A 2011 Keystone Hornet 30RKDS & 2015 Yamaha V-Star 1300 Delux WATCH FOR MOTORCYCLE
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Old 06-28-2011, 10:42 AM   #21
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SOMETHING did not smell ''right''

Linda and I were traveling over to Memphis by car one summer. We crossed the line and eventually stopped at a rest area not far out of Memphis. As we got out of the car you could not help but notice a rattie old station wagon parked close to the restrooms. On the windshield was a cardboard sign with printing stating that they were trying to ''Get Home'' because of Grand paw is sick.''...''Any money would be appreciated'' The man leaned out the window and asked if I could help them with a donation.... I said No...... There was the mother, father, one ''baby'' hanging onto ''Mom'' and three kids running around in the grass drinking sodas from the vending machines. The car was sad.... It had a rag for a gas cap, a coat hanger for a antenna, plastic for a back window and cardboard for one side window.
Linda and I went to the rest rooms and when we came back out Linda asked me if we should ''make a donation'' to help these people. I said ''NO'' because something just didnt fit. Perhaps it was the sodas the kids had..... Anyhow, we went on into Memphis and in our hotel room we found a ''flyer'' advertising ''Moonlite cruises on the Mississippi'' . We decided to ''take the cruise''.... We went down to the dock and boarded the steam ship and went up on the top deck. The boat pulled away from the dock and eventually everyone found a seat and relaxed to enjoy the ride. We sat there enjoying the ride and to my surprise, I looked forward about four rows and guess what I found. Yep, there was ''Mom and Dad munching on hot dogs and all the kids eating snacks with sodas and ice cream.''..............SURPRISE........

I kinda strolled forward and stopped at the fathers seat, leaned down and whispered......''You S.weet O.ld B.oy,,,,,,,,,,Did poor old Grand Paw finally die?''......... He looked at me like I had just shot at him ........
I went on forward to the snack bar and when I returned the ''poor people'' had gone........ Linda told me that after I spoke to the man and went forward they scooted out of there like chickens in a wind storm.....

My rule of life is ''If it dont smell right...... I wont touch it''......

Few things give me greater pleasure than to help someone that is in need and fewer things ''whiss me off'' more than people that try to take advantage of my generosity .....

God bless our troops of all colors and stripes......
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Old 06-29-2011, 06:06 AM   #22
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I loved the video... Thanks for sharing.... I know that when I give my money to the homeless that there is a good chance it is going to buy more alcohol or drugs...I usually say something like " make sure you buy food with this"...But knowing this doesn't stop me from giving..It is my choice, I will never judge those who I give the money to. Peace....D
Dickson and Tracy
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Old 06-29-2011, 11:34 PM   #23
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ANother thing we can all try ( I did this once, need to do more) is buy groceries or a meal for them. There was a guy outside Safeway once begging, I stopped and talked to him. I told him I would buy him whatever he wanted to just come in with me and fill up the cart. He would not come in, but after prodding he finally admitted what he would like. Bread, cheese, minor stuff. It was around the holidays so I bought him some eggnog, too. I came out and he was not there.

I drove around the shopping center and found him near McDonalds. He was so surprised to see that I was serious and came to find him. I gave him two big bags of food. Then I found out he was diabetic and he did not think the eggnog would be a good idea.

I wanted to give him a hug and he said, "no, I'm so dirty". My heart sank, I said "well so am I, come over here". I let him hug me for as long as he wanted. I gave him an extra squeeze at the end. "your life matters".

My gosh, we need to look for these opportunities. If they are doing drugs and alcohol it could very well be that they are trying to numb the pain (emotional, physical) or trying not to feel the cold. Or just a plain addiction which is hard as heck to overcome. (Although the medical field is making progress towards that, just hard to get it to the people that need it most due to costs.)

But I can see this RV community has a heart, and that is one of the reasons why I am going Full TIme. I like that we each help each other and encourage and cheer each other on.

You are all beautiful people and I feel grateful to have found you!
Robi Hutton
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Old 07-01-2011, 05:35 AM   #24
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My wife Linda and I had no children and we have always had a tender place for little kids and we would ''adopt'' a family each Christmas and spend some dollars to see that the kids got a memorable Christmas.
One year we miss out on adopting a family but I kinda made up for it anyway.
Linda had bought me one of those Santa Clause hats. It was red with white fur around the edge and a big white fuzzy ball on the end. Back then I had a full beard but I kept it clipped close. Just one inch long where I could comb it ..... It looked nice....
Linda sent me over to the Food Lion about four days before Christmas to pick up some staples like coffee, eggs, bread, milk, etc etc. Simple stuff that I can handle if I have a ''list''........
I did my shopping and went up to the check out behind a lady with two kids and an overflowing buggy full of obvious Christmas Dinner food. There was a small turkey, yams, cranberry sauce, green beans, potatoes, etc etc etc. She also had eggs, bacon and normal food stuffs for everyday cooking. She also had two kids in tow. One was about two and the other about four or five.
As she stood in line letting the girl ''zip'' here groceries she watched with great interest the amount coming up on the screen as the list and price increased with every ''zip''. As she watched the small boy, maybe two years old kept reaching for a Snickers candy bar and she kept smacking his hand telling him NO........ He finally looked up at me with my white beard, glasses and my red Santa hat and asked if I was ''Sana Krause''?
I was watching the lady as she watched the total screen and I saw here head kinda drop and she told the girl that she would have to put some things back on the shelf as she did not have enough food stamps to cover everything. The little boy kept reaching for the Snickers bar and she was becoming agitated with him. The lady looked at me and said she needed to ''Get by'' me and I just smiled and said that it would not be necessary. I reached in my pocket and tossed two one hundred dollar bills on the conveyer and told the check out girl to keep adding. I reached over to the candy counter and tossed on a box of Snickers Bars and a box of Reese Cups for good measure. The lady just hung her head and the little boy asked again .....''Are you Sanie Krause''. ''You look like Sanie Krause''. I assured the small child that I was not Santa but I was one of his helpers.
The lady finally looked up and tears were streaming down her cheeks. She said ''You may not be Santa but you are Santa to me and my family'' ''May I know your name sir that I might remember you in my prayer of thanks tonight?'' I told her that I was just a person and God would know who I am and that was good enough. They bagged up her goods and she left ahead of me. I got my stuff on the conveyer and the girl at the register just smiled at me and whispered......'' You really are Santa but you just wont tell will you''. I just smiled and paid my bill and left the store. I never saw the lady or the two small children again and I shopped at Food Lion about once a week. I hope I was a small part in making them a Merry Christmas.
From then on, when I went thru the girls check out line she would smile and whisper ....''Hay Santa''...........

God bless our troops ........
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:55 PM   #25
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We have a group of homeless vets that have an area near by our Walmart store here and collect pop cans and bottles (here in Oregon .5 cents each) so people are good about bringing them.
Every holiday I make a point of baking dozens of cookies and once I get them all together, I wrap them in a really nice box along with napkins and few other items and we deliver the cookies.
The look on their faces is worth the delivery! they know they are made special for them. Serves two purposes to let them know they are not forgotten faces and meets my need for baking! (its a family gene).
It brings me great joy and a small way to make sure we are taking care of one another, in a very small way.
I also always carry milk bones and small bags of dog food to share when the need presents itself.
Like many we never give money but rather a bag of groceries or a smile and hello. As we know when you extend yourself just for the sake of giving and making sure another fellow human being is acknowledged it makes a huge difference, both for the giver and the receiver.
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Old 07-01-2011, 03:12 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Rapid Robert View Post
"There but for the grace of God go I" . In the world today that thought comes to my mind all to often!
Well said. I thank God every day for all His blessings on my family and pray for those that are less fortunate!
Joe & Annette

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Old 07-01-2011, 04:01 PM   #27
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For the past 25 plus years we, along with a group of like minded people, feed the homeless a Christmas Day feast. We get up early Christmas morning and converge at a local Masonic Lodge and cook up a grand turkey dinner with all the fixins. We have a local school bus donate a bus and driver and travel throughout the community picking up folks that are homeless, sad, or just lonely and alone for the holidays.

We always manage to have a few wrapped presents for the young ones and every person leaves with a goodie-bag filled with non-perishable food, beverages, candy, cookies, socks, gloves, and personal grooming supplies.

We have been very fortunate to have many kind people and organizations donate food and supplies over the years. We happily see some people move on to better circumstances and many of them return to help us when they can afford to do so. But we sadly mourn those who pass away every year before we can celebrate another holiday with them.

I will say that this is the best Christmas gift that all of the volunteers can receive. We get the honor and privilege to serve and share warmth and fellowship with very grateful people. And these people are genuinely grateful with this small sharing of warm food and small gifts.

How can we ask for anything more than to give as much as we can to those who truly need?

Always remember to "Pay it Forward"...!!

Faith and Bob
Faith and Bob, Bitsy the Papillon and Bosco the Chi-weenie....RIP Truffles
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Old 07-01-2011, 06:13 PM   #28
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I have been on both sides of this post. In my 20s I remember collecting soda bottles to buy a candy bar or can of tuna, that might be all I had to eat that day. Only ten years ago I was traveling home to New York after visiting my Mother in Florida and ran out of money (and gas) on the south New Jersey turnpike. Pulled in to a rest area and was searching through clothes in the back of my minivan looking for change. My dogs were sitting in the back seat wondering what was up. A woman came up and asked what was wrong. I told her I was just looking for my ATM card. Somehow she knew better and said maybe this will help and handed me $20. I asked for her address to mail it back but she refused. I never forgot her. I always think of that day when I see someone who looks in need. Every year since I've delivered Thanksgiving meals to the needy. I still collect bottles and cans and carry them in my car to give them to anyone I see on the street searching through trash cans. I pick up perfectly good items on trash day in my wealthy neighborhood and donate them. Little things but a way to give back to those that helped me.

Fulltime workamper traveling with Toy Poodles Cricket and Liza and Standard Poodle Gable
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