If you are reading this then chances are you know someone who is currently living in their car. According to a report by the National Alliance to End Homelessness there are more than 553000 homeless people in the United States on any given night. Out of that number close to 200000 people are living in their cars.
That’s a lot of people living in some pretty tough circumstances. Sleeping in a car is not easy. It’s uncomfortable it’s cramped and it’s definitely not safe. But for many people it’s their only option.
If you have a friend or family member who is living in their car there are things you can do to help. Here are a few ideas:
1. Bring them meals.
One of the hardest things about living in your car is not having a proper kitchen. This means that cooking meals is often out of the question. If you’re able bring your friend or family member meals that they can heat up and eat easily.
2. Help them find a safe place to park.
If your friend or family member is living in their car chances are they are constantly on the move looking for a safe place to park for the night. If you have a spare parking spot at your house or know of a safe place they can park offer it to them.
3. Give them a place to shower.
Having a place to shower is another big challenge for people living in their cars. If you have a spare bathroom in your house that you can offer them use of do so. If not see if there’s a gym or community center nearby that has showers they can use.
4. Help them with their job search.
Many people who are homeless are also unemployed. If your friend or family member is living in their car chances are they’re struggling to find a job. You can help by assisting with their job search. This might include writing a resume filling out job applications or even just doing some research on companies that are hiring.
5. Offer to babysit.
If the person you know who is living in their car has children offer to babysit. This will give them a chance to job search or take care of other business without having to worry about their kids.
6. Give them a ride.
If you have a car offer to give your friend or family member a ride somewhere. This could be to a job interview to the grocery store or to a doctor’s appointment.
7. Help them with their car.
If the person you know is living in their car chances are their car is not in the best shape. You can help by offering to do some basic maintenance on their car such as changing the oil or rotating the tires.
8. Be a friend.
Living in your car is an incredibly isolating and lonely experience. Be a friend to the person you know who is living in their car. Offer them a listening ear a shoulder to cry on and a friendly face. Sometimes just knowing that someone cares can make all the difference.
How can you help someone living in their car?
You can help by providing them with food water and other necessities.
You can also help them by providing a place to sleep showers and other amenities.