According to Humanity in Action, approximately 10-15 thousand individuals are experiencing homelessness on any given night in Denmark. With the season of giving among us, here are a few ways you can support the most vulnerable members of our community this holiday season:
Text: Katharine H Noyed
1. Shop for mindful gifts
Kirkens Korshær is a Danish charity dedicated to helping the most vulnerable community members, including those suffering from poverty, mental and physical health illness, addiction, and homelessness. Anytime you purchase a gift at one of their 240 genbrugsbutikker in Denmark, you not only are choosing to shop in an environmentally-sustainable way, but you are also doing your part to support those experiencing homelessness.
If you’re someone who prefers to give handmade presents, you can also keep an eye out for fundraisers that shelters are offering. For instance, a shelter located at Istedgade 100 in Copenhagen frequently holds knitwear sales to raise funds for their services. They have a wide variety of winter clothing and accessories for children and adults alike. Additionally, if you make a donation, you will receive a hand-crocheted house as a symbol that everyone deserves to have shelter. They call it: a home for a home.
2. Make food donations
We’ve all seen it: it’s the end of the day, and bulging rubbish bags are being filled with the day-old leftover bread from our local grocery store. Most of the time, these baked goods are just smidt ud; however, it doesn’t have to be that way! Consider chatting with your grocer or baker about the possibility of collecting food that could be donated to the nearest shelter. This little chat could make a massive difference in the lives of individuals living on the street.
3. Buy (and read) homeless newspapers
It is illegal to beg in Denmark, but unfortunately, not everyone has the circumstances to make a living due to many highly-complex reasons. With this in mind, buying newspapers such as Hus Forbi and Strada is a tangible way to support those experiencing homelessness. So consider picking one up next time you pass an individual selling one of these papers this holiday season!