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Why I don’t give to homeless people

July 19, 2017

Author's Note: This is a controversial blog about a polarising and tender topic. I get it.

My aim is to take a fresh look at an age-old situation and raise awareness that we need to support these people, who are part of our community, helping them to raise their own value and into a position where they are giving value - in order to feel valued. With everything I have studied in human behaviour and those I have worked with in refuges and with a trauma background, feeling valued is where it begins.

I do very much appreciate that it is a topic that polarises people and I don’t believe staying quiet about it or continuing the same way we have for years is fixing the problem.

Be warned that this may push buttons and be aware that my intentions are to resolve the bigger picture. I’m ok that it stirs up conversations. This is worth talking about.




I’ve always felt quite controversial for walking by homeless people without even flinching to give them any of my change. The guilt I would momentarily feel was perhaps in the face of the people around me, wondering what they thought of me walking straight by, rather than for the person actually sitting on the pavement with his sign asking for money.


It was only after penny-dropping contemplation of what was behind this seeming lack of empathy, that I was able to quantify it to myself and finally understand my own actions and apparent lack of emotions.


In my world, everybody has a value. Period.



Now it could be argued in my philosophy circle that the value homeless people bring is to give others the chance to empathise, to donate, to give to someone other than themselves and therefore feel selfless, in turn making them feel better about themselves, that they’re ‘good people’. And unless the beggars ever own another reality for themselves, then this is the value that they offer.


Perhaps they also offer an opportunity for comparison. Those walking by feeling like they’ve lost everything, can gain some perspective that, in fact, they didn’t lose everything because that’s what losing everything looks like – there on the street. They simply lost something that was important to them, however they still have a roof above their heads, food on the table, etc. Thank you to the beggar who provides the contrast and allows us to appreciate what we do have.


Outside of philosophical discussions where these things would be dissected at length, my own personal thoughts (not claiming them as correct, purely claiming them as my opinion) is that by giving money to someone for doing absolutely nothing in return, is us saying “You have no value.  You have nothing worthwhile to contribute to this world and therefore I will give you money because that is the only way you will get by.  You have nothing to offer.”




Yet, in my understanding of the world, everybody has a value. Everybody has something to offer.


I believe these same people have something inherently important to contribute in their lifetime. I believe that what they have experienced throughout all of their years has a value to be shared. I believe that they have something great within them that will lie dormant as long as they do. I believe they have stories you’d pay to hear.


I appreciate that the gorge between homelessness and owning your greatness is real. I am not pretending that withholding my spare change is the solution. There is a lot of support required in what has to be a multi faceted solution. But I do believe that enabling their current mindset of ‘you have no value to add here’ is fuelling the fire they burn by.


This has been on my mind a lot as I currently roll out my newest online course about tapping in to your purpose to truly access, share and live your value. It circles around my head about how I can extend my reach and share this with those people who feel lost on their path.


I’ve realised that most people don’t know what they’re here on Earth to do.


In my travels through life and my 10 years study of human behaviour, I’ve learned how to tap in. I’ve pulled together all the juicy questions that provide access to this internal source and I’ve created an online program so anybody, anywhere in the world, at any time can decide they’re ready to tap in themselves. 


As soon as I did this for myself, I honestly felt my life was being divinely led. It was actually magical being the observer, watching it unfold in front of me. I’m still gobsmacked and utterly inspired by the way life works when we work out how to tap in to the gold on our own path. 


If anybody else is feeling they need direction on their path, my recommendation is not to seek advice from external sources. Your answers are within you. If I can help you tap into your inherent answers with the same questions that helped me, then I’d love to share my program, Eudaimonia, with you. 


If you figure out that one of your purposes in life is to empower homeless people into a life that they are inspired by, please get in touch. I’d love to brainstorm ideas and am open and willing to start any movement that is genuinely empowering for all involved.


Here is the link to my course in case you’re interested. Feel free to ask me anything in the meantime. I’m an email away.









Sherrie Laryse




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