To give or not to give, Kim has the answers

Page 2 Advice
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Dear Kim,

What advice do you have about giving money to panhandlers?  This isn’t just a Topeka problem.  I see it just about everywhere I travel.  I like to think I’m a compassionate person, but at the same time I don’t want to contribute to unscrupulous people. 



Dear Adreinne,

We’ve all seen the stories about panhandlers hopping in their new car and driving away when their day is done.  When I watch these videos, I always think “wow, what a tough way to earn a living.”  Then there are the panhandlers who use the money to fuel drug and/or alcohol problems.  Then I think, well, at least they’re asking for money rather than burglarizing homes or robbing people.  Then again, panhandling could just be their day job.  What to do, what to do?

Seriously though, it’s easy to feel torn when encountering panhandlers.  The most important thing to remember is the person out there on the corner is a living, breathing, feeling, human being.  A simple acknowledgement of the individual can be lifesaving to some.  It goes back to what we learned in Sunday school.  Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  It always applies.  What if you were holding that sign or had your hand out? 

It is a personal decision whether you give money to anyone.  If you do, practice giving without judgement.  (I read that somewhere and it stuck with me.)  Benevolence is never out of fashion.

Have a question?  Ask Kim!

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