with Mayor Gavin Newsome, Homeless Connect San Francisco
I was so impressed with this Project Homeless Connect
(PHC) event I thought I would write a little about it. I first heard
about this from my friend and fellow acupuncturist, Lynn. I volunteered
to provide acupuncture treatments in the healing arts area of the
event at the Bill Graham Civic Center.
The morning was busy. Many people were standing in line to check
in for the many free service such as free reading glasses, books,
HIV testing, foot scrubs and massage, and acupuncture. There are
many typical looking of bag ladies and men,
Unkempt hair and dress, some appearing disoriented or just lost.
They all seem to be into their own business to take advantage of
these free services, walking from table to table to check what services
they can get.
Many passed by the acupuncture station and signed
their name to get in line for treatment. Surprisingly each one of
them seems to know one another. They all start to say Hi to each
other, exchange a few hugs, with much laughing and consolation for
each other for their own or others problems. Suddenly I feel a sense
of a small community right on this spot. They are all sitting in
half circle with needles on their ears, and scalps, quietly or sometimes
chatting. It looks very peaceful, and comfortable. After about 20-30
minutes the needles are removed then they get up and went on to
Homeless are people who are like us that need comfort
and reassurance as much as they can get. And to help each other
if they can. They seem to understand each other’s needs, help
if they can and move on. To many, being homeless is not even their
choice, but to some, living on the street is the way to free themselves
from rules and confinement as they can come and go as they wish
anytime and anywhere. This seems a harsh trade to me, but I feel
like reaching out to them is the best thing we can do.