One of the strange qwerks of blogging and being able to check out the number of hits one gets when one blogs is that the stuff one posts that one feels ought to get lots of hits don’t and other stuff that one expects won’t be of all that much interest do. When yesterday I posted about suspended coffees, after having earlier posted stuff that imho was a lot more meritorious for reading by the wider public, it was the former that got the hits as opposed to the latter. This is not a problem per se but it is a salutary lesson even so.
It got me thinking about what resonates with folks and what doesn’t and in an encouraging way it struck me there are lots of folk out there that really want to do good to their fellow human beings irrespective of ideology or religion. As one of my missions is to find out what is “out there” for the homeless (ref. my recent “Southend rough sleeper leaflet” post) it got me thinking how much is done to help others, specifically folk in this category, that few others know about. For example, there is an eating place in central Southend that gives out drinks and other stuff for free that few know about. I don’t have all the facts but when I do I will make this an addendum to this post. There are a few (true not enough of them) landlords who are interested in more than the bottom line, i.e. how to maximize returns for their investments, who take in otherwise rough sleepers into their accommodation. I happen to be involved with one church, St. Andrews in Westcliff, that run Open House every Sunday night, specifically to give a meal and show hospitality to rough sleepers and other needy folk, that few know off despite it achieving much good. I can go on about all sorts of random and not so random acts of kindness that disparate folk exercise toward these folk, often at considerable personal cost, but I guess by now you get my point.
Today I visited an eating establishment that I had been aware off for a while but hitherto have not visited. What makes it special is that it also gives out suspended coffees to rough sleepers. This is Anke’s tea and coffee lounge, next to Argosy Toys and opposite Halfords, in Westciff. It is a charming place despite being situated by a busy main road and the sort of place I can imagine visiting with friends. I made the acquaintance of the congenial proprietors and enjoyed a sandwich and coffee, as well as buying a couple of suspended coffees. I was told they give out around three suspended coffees each day and two of their takers are regulars. They have found few if any problems in doing this. While less busy on the suspended front than the Utopia café are, discussed in my earlier post, probably being due to the fact they are further out to where many rough sleepers tend to congregate, it seems to me they also provide a valuable service.
In concluding, I can’t think of too much profound to say that I haven’t already said, other than to state the obvious, i.e. there is a lot out there that is doing a lot of good for the more vulnerable members of our community, and those involved do so often at considerable personal cost and usually without ostentation. While some will dismiss the folk being helped as being the dredges of society who we shouldn’t be bothering with (I recall a recent heated Facebook exchange on the matter and sadly there is a good deal of ignorance and lack of compassion), I beg to differ and is far from being the case (John 3v16 relates). I for one applaud folk, religious and non, who do their bit to help, and make ours a better world.