My kids have an uncanny knack to only ask the really tough questions when we’re driving in bad traffic.
I have confirmed that I am in fact Santa while driving rush hour travel on 635. I have answered questions about sex while cutting through a parking lot to avoid a long traffic light in a desperate attempt to make it to school drop off on time. I have explained why grandma cannot come back from heaven while navigating in and out of the express lanes on LBJ.
Yes, death, sex, and Santa are tough conversations to be having with your kids while behind the wheel. But the conversations I struggle the most with while driving the kids are those involving the homeless people we encounter.
Whether it’s someone panhandling at an intersection, sleeping under a freeway overpass, or walking around downtown with all of their possessions, our kids encounter homeless people all the time in Dallas.
And they ask hard questions.
Why is he sleeping there? Why doesn’t she have a home? Why doesn’t he have a family to take care of him?
I struggle with these questions the most because these people tug at my heart strings.
You and your kids can make the shift from empathy to action by volunteering for one of these amazing organizations serving the homeless people of Dallas.
Family Gateway’s mission is to provide stability and life-changing supportive services to children and families affected by homelessness.
They welcome volunteers of all ages, and opportunities include helping kids with homework, organizing the donation closet, and planning activities for children.
Contact Kendall Brown at [email protected] to receive the calendar sign-up link for activities you can do as a family. There are also opportunities to volunteer remotely, including assembling snack bags and writing notes of encouragement to staff and clients.
Union Gospel Mission is a faith-based organization that serves disabled vets and the homeless men, women, and children in the Dallas community.
They welcome school groups and families volunteering, and volunteer projects begin with a tour of the shelter and overview of its mission.
The Birthday Party Project believes that all children should have a joyful birthday experience, regardless of circumstance.
The Birthday Party Project organizes birthday parties for children living in shelters or transitional living facilities. Volunteers provide fun, age-appropriate games, activities, party décor, and more.
Hope Supply Company is focused on meeting the critical needs of homeless and at-risk children across North Texas by providing necessities including diapers, wipes, hygiene kits, baby food and formula, clothing, school supplies, and toys.
Hope Supply Company is in need of hygiene and birthday boxes. Boxes can be made at home by purchasing or doing a drive to collect the items from friends and family. Children 10 and up can also volunteer in their warehouse sorting and packaging donations.