My interfaith organization, JAM & All, did a service project at our local homeless shelter yesterday. The concept was pretty simple. We collected personal care supplies in tote bags, so that each bag had a complete set of soap, towel, shampoo, etc., and brought them to the shelter, and then we had crafts and games for the kids and served refreshments. It was pretty successful, I'd say; we had a good turnout. Of the JAM members that showed up, most were Muslim, but there was a good mix, including some people who came from the community because they saw the notice in the newspaper.
I spent my time with a little five-year-old girl named Jalisa. We talked and read some stories and poems and made a bag with her name on it. She was very smart and sweet. I told her mother, "I used to have a little girl, but she grew up." The people at the shelter, especially the women and children, seemed far from hopeless. Having children is a kind of handicap women have that makes it very difficult to get a job, because daycare costs money and you don't have money until you work, and you can't work if you don't have daycare. Why we don't have government daycare, that's a mystery, possibly explained by the predominance of men and rich people in government.