This is an extraordinary moment. For months we have been trying to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, not even pausing for a summer break; we have never let our homeless friends be alone.
We have adapted our services, while maintaining our values, according to the national laws and protocols. After the recent declaration of Piedmont as “red area” due to the coronavirus second wave, we have changed the sit-in breakfast to takeaway We have maintained our ways throughout: warm relationships, lots of excellent food products, attending to our friends’ small and big needs (not just the lack of food). Thus, during the two hours we are open for breakfast, we also think about bed linens, shoes, warm clothes, personal hygiene products, medicines vouchers, photocopies of documents (and going with them to the offices that are still open) and books for reading.
From today, we will have the chance to use an oximeter to check the blood oxygen, an even more significant indicator than temperature measurement (something we have always done, and we will keep doing).
Our work as companions of our friends shouldn’t slow down. It requires a lot of effort as we try to approach those who are among the main victims, directly or indirectly, of this pandemic with both warmth and efficiency. This deep spiritual commitment has also “infected” many young people, who have supported our Service during the last few months, another sign that there is hope in our city.
Is there disaster everywhere? Among the disaster, there are many good things ongoing. “Everybody experiences unrest and disorientation”, “political institutions live on another planet” …What can we say?
Our friends feel welcomed, cared for and loved. This is relevant. And it is the best message, the most impactful “publicity” for Christ’s charity that brings, touches, lifts and pushes people to get them back on their path.
Article sent by the Daughters of Charity of “La Carità di Santa Luisa”, a day centre for and with homeless people, known as “Charité” in Turin, Italy.