Most of our days are filled with nonstop activity. Work, school, appointments, meetings, supper, housework, homework, putting kids to bed…and everything in between. After a long day, however, most of us take the last step for granted — getting into a comfy bed.
Somewhere between 14% and 16% of our population in Newfoundland is considered to be “low-income.” But as others have pointed out, that number doesn’t include people who don’t file a tax return. It’s safe to say, the actual number of people who need help is much higher.
Up until 2013, the number of low-income earners in NL was steadily declining every year. Since then, however, the numbers have been on the rise. In 2018, over 16% of our population was considered low-income. With the impact of COVID-19, no one is expecting this number to decrease any time soon.
For argument sake, let’s assume the percentage is steady at 16%. That means, with a population of about 445,000 (older than 15), there are at least 71,200 people trying to live on low-incomes. If percentages are true, then at least 30,000 of them are living in the St. John’s area. More than likely, that number is much larger!
The need has never been greater, but we can all work together to make a difference. The question is, how?
One of the ways we can help is by supporting local charitable organizations like Home Again Furniture Bank. The local group collects furniture and other basic home supplies and distributes it to those in need, at no cost to them.
Through Home Again, over 1500 people have helped over 1600 people.
On March 29, 2021 the group is launching their annual “Heads Without Beds” campaign. This is one of their main fundraising efforts — participants find people to sponsor them to sleep without their bed for one night on April 23rd.
My family is participating for two reasons: the opportunity to make a difference, and the opportunity to live in someone’s shoes for a night.
Our family of four, and some of our extended family, have started a team together! I’m sure we’ll find ways to make it a memorable night. No doubt the kids will build a fort or set up the tent in the living room and camp out on the floor for the night. Add in a few games and some snacks, and I’m sure the experience will be a hit — even if we don’t get much sleep.
If you would like to be a sponsor for our team, you can do so by clicking here and donating towards our team goal.
If you’d like to participate yourself, you can register for the event as well by clicking here. The more awareness we can create, the better we can work together!
Maybe you’d like to start a team at work, or sign up your family! Mark it on the calendar!!
Home Again’s goal for 2021 is $60,000 and I think we can crush that goal if we all work together!!
SIDE NOTE: If you have a back issue and can’t sleep without your bed, no worries. You could choose to simply make a donation (cause you certainly know how important beds are!) OR, you could make a modification to the night — use an air mattress or sleep on the couch for a night. The goal isn’t to make sure you can’t walk for a week, the goal is to raise awareness and resources to help those who need basic furniture (like a bed).
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SOURCES: statista.com; statcan.gc.ca; headswithoutbeds.ca; cbc.ca