I have been writing this blog coming on for 7 months now and occasionally I am plagued by feelings of guilt that I don’t actually do enough for the charities themselves. Yes OK I make regular donations and I spend my money in them, but with their overheads on the shops, spending your wages in them is never going to be as effective as donating cold hard cash.
Blogging, and fashion blogging in particular, can be a very self absorbed world, full of #TodayImWearing and “What I bought this month” commentary. I have since come to the conclusion that I can no longer keep consoling myself that I am blogging for a good cause, and that alone is enough. Because it’s not enough. What happens when you come into contact with all these charities is that you become familiar with their principals and stance. There are so many good causes out there, it’s impossible to know what to donate to. I guess in the end you have to prioritise your charity, and that’s easier said than done. No one cause is more or less worthy than the next.
The point of all this is that I have decided to participate in the Bethany Christian Trust Big Sleepout in Aberdeen on Friday 22nd March.
There are a few reasons why I chose this particular cause, some less emotive than others:
- I still have a limp from my knee injury, so running any kind of 1/2 marathon or 10K is rather out of the question unless they’re prepared to host the race over 3 days.
- Despite not considering myself a Christian, it doesn’t mean that I can’t be a good person and this charity shows compassion to people who are very often completely shunned in our society
- I can only imagine the retched existence that is genuine homelessness. I feel so sad that a person has had quite literally no one to turn to and has instead found themselves on the streets.
- The mistrust of people who are begging is a very difficult situation. People don’t want to donate their money to a beggar if they feel like it is going to be used for drugs or alcohol. I also read stories about those people who pretend to be homeless, go out begging, and rake in the cash. These stories whether true or completely unfounded do nothing to encourage people to help those who are in desperate need, hungry and have no one to turn to. People feel that they can’t work out what is real need and what is simply a façade.
- Imagine being homeless with the current weather. That alone is enough. By doing this through a charity I know that the donations will be going to good people who help the helpless in a way that I never could alone.
If I am honest, I have been thinking about participating in this event for a while, and have been dithering as to whether to commit. Spending a night on the streets, in Aberdeen of all places is going to be mildly uncomfortable, very cold, and very miserable, and I’m probably going to need the entire weekend to recover from it, but then imagine if that was my day to day life. I hope that this experience is going to extend my compassion for those in need, and do something to counteract the vanity associated with fashion blogging.
I will be blogging about my experience on the night and the people that I meet, and I hope to make a difference to someone’s life, however small.
I have set up a page on JustGiving.com. Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to the charity and make sure Gift Aid is reclaimed on every eligible donation by a UK taxpayer. So it’s the most efficient way to donate – I raise more, whilst saving time and cutting costs for the charity.
Should you wish to make a donation you can visit my page here . Please also pray for a southerly wind and no rain. Thank you