Last week we took part in the Asunnottomien Yö – event. Us and some other Laurea students organized the clothes collect, sorting them and their distribution. We got a good amount of clothes by donations and sorted them before the event. Most of the clothes were in good condition and appropriate. Some we had to take away due to them being really dirty or broken.
I was also updating Laurea’s Instagram (LaureaUAS) before and during the event. It was interesting to notice how time consuming it is. I liked doing it, but feel like it partly took my attention away from the actual human contact. Luckily I also found time to concentrate on being present during the event.
I feel that the program in the event was much needed. For example, there were many people cutting hair/beards for free, doing hand massages and manicures. People were lining up. Of course free food and other beverages were as important. In the evening there were panels and a few performers. Overall a good mix of different activities.
The thing that I remember the most, was the joy I got when I found clothes for someone. When I noticed someone wandering around not that comfortable with digging from the piles, I asked if there was something specific they were looking for. Regardless of the answer, almost always I could find something for them to take with. That made me feel so satisfied. Especially when of course there were also those who were more eager to be there first. Some aren’t that comfortable with approaching the situation.
I’m really happy I had the chance to take part in this kind of an experience. I feel like it widened my view more about the issue of homelessness and I met some amazing people. I am so thankful the people who work daily on this issue exist. Since there are still so many homeless people in Finland, the work people do for them is extremely important. Quoting Ulla Pyyvaara (Vva Ry): “As long as there are people homeless in Finland, our effort matters.”