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Home is Where…

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Today is December 6, 2015.

Today I began “putting myself out there.”

I am inspired by the great Jim Carrey. He puts himself out there for the entire world to see and hear. He chooses love, over the fear of rejection criticism and backlash. He chooses love, and shares it with as many people as will listen.

Today I told two of my roommates about my plans to start a non-profit organization. I have told other people already. It is not just a plan, it is my dream. It is my passion. I have decided that I do not need to be a capitalist. I do not need to sell-out to be a success. I do not need to be rich or famous. I would be happy with so much less. I would be happy just to make others happy. I would be happy to go broke if it meant that I helped even one other person. I know I can do better than that.

My dream is for everyone that I love to be happy. My dream is to help people; to “serve all of humanity,” in any way that I can.

My plan so far is to give a permanent home to least 20 out of the 1,700 homeless people in Winnipeg. At first I thought I read that there were 1,700 people without a home in Canada, now I realize that this problem is even worse than I had imagined.

I once had a permanent home myself. It was built by my parents. They built it from the ground up, with some help, and donated supplies. I may not have always appreciated it. It may not be the best house. It was built out of love, and that may be the only thing that keeps it standing – although it is starting to sink into the ground. Even though I do not live there anymore, it is still within my family, and for that I am happy. It was my home for the first 9 years of my life, and I know that if myself or my family members need a place to go, it will be there.

Now I live in a house with many other roommates. I believe there are 7 of us total; 4 of us on the main floor and 3 in the basement. Some of us have a one year lease, some are renting month-to-month. One of my roommates just moved in – I met him this morning. Another is moving away next week. The roommate that is moving away is the same roommates that has written us all notes, saying that we need to be quiet after 11PM, and that we need to respect the public areas by keeping them clean. In these notes, he says that we are all family. I agree with him; even though we come and go, even though we sometimes do not get along, we are a family. We care about each other and we want each other to feel safe, and welcome. We all have at least one thing in common; we live here and we call it our home.

I have moved many times since I turned 18, and I am now 21 years old. I have felt intense frustration at times, wishing that I could find somewhere to live where I would want to always stay. I believe I have found that place finally, even though my lease ends in September 2016. I thought I had found it before, but I ended up moving due to the cost of the place. It was the most lovely home you could imagine; in Osborne Village, a short bus ride away from work, a short walk to the bus stop and all the lovely shops of the Village, and I was even allowed to have my pets with me. It was not what you would call a luxury apartment; it was the second floor of a character home, and as far as I am concerned it was the most wonderful place to call home in all of Winnipeg.

Even though it was so lovely, it was very lonely to live by myself. Even with other tenants, above and below me, and with my dog and my cat. I am not sure that I would ever choose to live alone again. I much prefer living with roommates, and we live in a very lovely home. I choose this as my home because the landlords are such wonderfully kind and helpful people. They have put a lot o work into this house since I moved in,  they helped me find roommates, and they have even offered to help me in my solar power projects.

I am a firm believer that everyone deserves a home. We all deserve a safe and warm and welcoming place to rest. Anyone who is alive deserves to be loved and deserves a home. It was Jesus who said to love your enemies; I would offer a safe place to rest even to those who I consider less than an ally. I know that homeless people sometimes scare those who have homes; I think it is because they fear becoming homeless, and they know it could very well happen to anyone. I also know that when someone is or has been homeless, they are likely to do anything they can to support themselves, even if it means using others or stealing or even worse. I want to give these people a home and make sure that they never have to go to such lengths.

I choose love, over fear. I am not afraid to see the homeless, I am not afraid to go through accountants and financial advisors and lawyers.  I am not afraid to go broke or to make mistakes in my journey, if it means that I was able to help someone. I am not afraid to sacrifice my time in the name of love. On the contrary; these are exactly the things I want most.