The Homeless

Lifestyle

This year’s Christmas period has seen three wonderful men set up home outside Fulham Broadway Station. They have boxes, sleeping bags and more food than Dawn French probably consumes in a year. People have been generous with their donations this year I presume. They gorge on mince pies, sandwiches and Starbucks coffees! Its scenes like this that make me feel as if the kindness of Londoners is underrated at times. I mean, we’ve got organisations such as CRISIS at Christmas where hundreds of ‘cold hearted’ city dwellers volunteer to help the homeless, that’s a show of true dedication to helping improve the lives of others I feel!! I think next year, people need to reflect upon these small acts of kindness which happen daily in the capital and be happy, a la Love Actually!

Despite everything positive from this image, I fell into the patronising age old comparison between ‘us’ and ‘them’…  “gosh, it must be so cold for them during the winter months” or “they must be absolutely starving”… no, you don’t say. But anyway, as I continued on this somewhat annual tradition of comparison, I realised that students (i.e. me and the majority of you) are not that different to these people living in cardboard boxes. I am always hungry because I can’t afford to buy lots of food and pretty much eat eggs for breakfast, lunch and dinner and my house might as well be made from cardboard because it is so chilly! Don’t get me wrong however, I’m not proposing that we shouldn’t sympathise with the homeless, in fact we should be more inclined to do so, but we have to think about our own situation as students too. The rise in tuition fees is potentially creating a generation of ‘educated homeless’ people. Most can barely afford university as it is, so why make it more difficult for us? It’s like taking a cardboard box away from a person living on the streets, but the government somehow sees it as progressionary. Interesting. Just because you don’t see students huddled up in doorways, doesn’t mean we don’t have a struggle on our hands.

I do sometimes wonder what Robin Hood is doing right now? Wish he’d make a trip to parliament and teach them a few lessons…

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