My first time visiting Hesed House was on August 19, 2015. I was ecstatic to join the Health Advocacy Clinic. I wanted to help people get Social Security benefits, conduct intake interviews, and order medical records from local hospitals. As lunch time approached, I decided to order a tuna sandwich from Jimmy Johns. Jimmy Johns stated they would deliver my sandwich, so I decided to wait outside for it. While waiting for my lunch, I saw a man pacing back and forth under a bridge, near Hesed House. It seemed like he was contemplating something, seemed very confused. He continued pace back and forth, until he stopped. He turned to the concrete wall, unzipped his pants, and proceeded to urinate. I could not believe what I was looking at, a man in his late thirties urinating in public, in the middle of the day. He did not seem to care who was looking at him, cars were racing by him, each car that raced by was able to see him in clear vie
I was shocked. I began to question why anyone would do something like that. Does he not care if there are minors in those passing cars? Does he not care if someone walks by? If someone he knew passed by, would he still do this? Questions continued to swirl through my brain, until I decided to walk back into Hesed House and wait for my food inside
As I walked into Hesed House, still in shock, I was becoming annoyed. Then I came to the realization that there are many factors that may have forced this behavior. Things like he may suffer from a mental health or substance abuse issue. The act is unlawful, and it goes against public policy. However, many people may be forced to conduct the act because they do not have a car, do not have a home, and may suffer from mental health issues. Many people who reside at Hesed House suffer from mental health issues, like PTSD, severe anxiety, and schizophrenia. Many also have addictions that can impact their behavior.
This experience made me appreciate the Health Advocacy Clinic. The Health Advocacy Clinic helps people in need get public benefits. The benefits will hopefully raise their standard of living, like provide money for rent, food, and health care. The shocking experience made me understand that people within the Hesed House community need help, and I can help them.