San Antonio’s homeless find a haven for hope.

San Antonio’s homeless find a haven for hope.

This is the time of year when hope reigns supreme.

Whether it’s the nature of the season that makes our hearts grow bigger, or we just want to help a fellow citizen in need, when we inch closer to Christmas, we do it. We don’t think about ourselves as we do the other 11 months of the year.

Haven for Hope in San Antonio does it 365 days a year by helping the homeless. It’s a place that offers hope and new beginnings for people in Bexar County. There are two programs: Prospects Courtyard and the Transformational Campus. Per the website, both are on Haven for Hope property and require a visit intake to get started. Prospects Courtyard is a “low-barrier safe sleeping program” that offers shelter and basic needs. The Transformation Campus offers services and shelter “with an emphasis toward addressing the root causes of homelessness.”

In San Antonio, the site says there are 2,981 homeless people each day. Out of those, 1,243 lack shelter and 31 percent are people in families.

The average age of a homeless child in San Antonio is 6.

As for the state of Texas, on a single night there were 34,052 people homeless in 2012. Of that number, 6,115 were chronically homeless and 4,511 were family households. As of 2012, Texas contained roughly 5.4 percent of the nation’s homeless. Most states are less than 1 percent.

In 2010, there were 131,198 homeless children in America, according to the Haven for Hope website.

The numbers don’t look much better for the country. As of 2012, on a single night approximately 634,782 people were homeless. Of that, 394,379 were individuals and 239,403 were people in families.

Even more troubling, veterans are much more likely to be homeless than non-veterans – 29 of every 10,000 vets are homeless, according to the Haven for Hope site.

This is where you come in. Obviously, non-profits need donations to survive. As the old saying  goes, “No amount is too little.” If it’s money you wish to donate to Haven for Hope, options are available to do so. You can even donate through the mail.  You also can serve as a volunteer or you can even intern with the company.

In an effort to pay it forward, Haven for Hope hosts job fairs to help the homelessness get a job. An interesting note from the company’s site is that one-third of people who are homeless are employed; however, they’re underemployed and don’t make enough to cover the cost of living. There are numerous stories of people overcoming homelessness still wanting to give back to the community, so Haven for Hope supports programmatic neighborhood cleanups, renovations, donation drives, and neighborhood beautification.

Since it is the season of giving, why not to do something to help a fellow human? You never know when it may come full circle.