Charity begins at homeless

Billions allocated for foreign aid, but what about the domestic front?


Charity begins at home
NEWS A homeless mother, who is 25 weeks pregnant, and her eight-year-old daughter have been sleeping rough in their Holden Commodore for the past 10 weeks. They have been rejected from joining the HomesWest priority list and by eight refuges.
###ALERT They cannot be identified ###ALERT Story Peter Law. Photo Stewart Allen


Our governments spend billions of dollars on foreign aid for the ever increasing wave of refugees and drought stricken starving people across the globe, this charity is noble and commendable.  

With the growing numbers of displaced people needing urgent refuge, the global community is opening their borders in an attempt to lend aid to the desperate people fleeing poverty and war.



Australia is included in this charity drive.


But can we afford it?


As a nation we have a huge heart.  


And I am proud of our international contribution to the needs of others. 


But, as the world self destructs we face a future of uncertainty and are reaching critical mass when it come to resource sustainability.  


The question I ask is how will we support these people, when we cannot support the population we have already?


Homeless and faceless



These numbers are increasing (+1.1% since 2006) and our support networks are struggling under the pressure.


17% are under the age of 12.


30% were born overseas.


In Western Australia we have 9,592 (42.8 people per 10,000)  homeless people, including whole families.


For me these figures are alarming, and it implies an incapacity to look after our existing population.


So with this in mind, are we doing anyone any real social justice by increasing our population?


The total population for Australia as at 4 December 2015 is 23,947,701 and the rate of internal population growth is

predicated on the following parameters:

  • one birth every 1 minute and 46 seconds,
  • one death every 3 minutes and 23 seconds ,
  • a net gain of one international migration every 2 minutes and 37 seconds, leading to
  • an overall total population increase of one person every 1 minute and 32 seconds.


According to the ABS, Australia’s estimated resident population is projected to increase to between 30.9 and 42.5 million people by 2056; and to between 33.7 and 62.2 million people by 2101.  


No matter how you look at it, this is allot of people.  


In my mind, it is too many.  


We must question our ability to sustain such a large populace.


Water is becoming more scarce as quality rain fall is declining, the flow-on effect of this is the reduced capacity to grow crops=food shortages.


Our food supplies are already showing signs of supply stress and this will not get better.  


As our climate changes begin to influence our agriculture more and more, things will only get worse. 


Add to the mix a government fixated on population growth policies, and we are setting ourselves up for a sustainability crisis.


This article title is self explanatory, I feel.  But let me clarify….


Charity must begin within the borders of our own countries.


My belief is that we must look after the people we have here in this country, right now.  



How will we supply water, food, accommodation, utilities and the like for the 23+ million people who already call this great country home?  


Let alone 30+ million.


When we have “no child living in poverty” and no families living in their cars, and no charity organisations begging for donations to give food and blankets to people in critical need, then we can start opening our doors to the rest of the world.  


How can we say to our own people that they are not as important as the people of another country.  That our charity belongs to others before we will give it to them.


Because that is what we are doing.  And it is wrong.


Take a look in the mirror


We are turning our backs on our own citizens in an attempt to save face in the eyes of the global community and organisations such as the United Nations.  


How can we stand up and say we can help others, when we cannot take care of the the social calamity that exists within our own backyard?


It is one thing for the wife of the President of the Unites States to pontificate over the concept of charity and the expanding concept of home. . .


michelle obama


But is she giving up her comfortable stable to a family in need of a bed, some shoes or a warm meal.  


I doubt it very much.  (And if she is, I stand corrected).


So before you condemn me for being non-humanitarian, consider taking a walk around your own neighbourhood and ask yourself if charity should start off shore or at home.


Until next time,

stay safe.


Robyn Williams