Poverty and homelessness are issues that are very near and dear to me. In a country with such amazing wealth and opportunity, it breaks my heart to see the level of poverty and homelessness we have here. Whenever I drive to the city, I notice the homeless pushing shopping carts up and down the street. I also notice the reaction of other people to them. Most tend to rush by like they’re invisible and I wonder if they even notice them as they go on with their busy lives.
We have had record breaking heat here in Vermont the past few weeks. It’s not at all normal for us to break 90F during the summer. I can recall many summers where we didn’t hit 90 at all and this year we have done it over and over again. Because we don’t have a lot of super hot weather, many people aren’t used to the heat and being outside with the sun beating down on you all day can be an awful experience.
Our local homeless mission has a thrift store attached to it where they sell donated items to raise money for the mission and the room and board of the homeless people who stay there. I decided to pay forward some of the kindness I’ve received in my life by sharing some ice cold beverages with some of the workers at the mission to let them know that someone was thinking of them.
The mission thrift store is right next to our Walmart so that was the natural choice for me to stop at for beverages. I wanted a bottle that was big enough to last a while and not loaded with sugar because I wasn’t sure what kind of health issues the people there would have. I also wanted a variety of flavors because I didn’t know who would like what. I wanted something a little bit more special than plain water. I decided to go with the Clear American sparkling beverages from Walmart. They’re a good size, low in sugar and are affordable at only .69 each. They do contain aspartame which isn’t my favorite ingredient but it is safer for some than sugar. I hope they’ll consider using stevia in their beverages in the future.
We loaded up a tub with ice and beverages and drove it to our homeless mission in the city. I got the kids in on the project too. It’s never hurts to let them understand how lucky they are to have what they have and to see the challenges other people have to deal with. Everyone enjoyed the ice cold Clear American drinks and I’m glad this was something I could do to pay it forward.
Check out my This Moment for the whole process. How can you pay it forward today? Think about it!
Disclosure: This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias #CBias which is a vendor for Cott Beverages Inc., the manufacturer of Clear American ® brand beverages. All opinions are mine and mine alone.