The Homeless of Barnsdall Park

barnsdYou may have heard of Barnsdall Park, known for it’s design by Frank Lloyd Wright, and featuring a private movie theater, Friday night wine tasting, summer art classes for kids and adults, ethnic festivals, and a Wednesday afternoon farmers market. Our apartment building backs up to the west side of the park, making it just a hop, skip, and a jump to the lush rosemary and sage bushes, blooming cactus, and art installations galore that grace the park. But the landscape is changing, as it has also become a rest stop for the many homeless in the Hollywood/ Los Feliz area. The park’s entrance is on Hollywood Bl. just east of Thai Town and Little Armenia, a good area to be in if you are poor and homeless because it is dotted with restaurants and food stands and a density of people, somecamp cold and indifferent, but some willing to give a helping hand. When food is found, they make way to the park for a soft grassy hill to sit on, and a sturdy olive tree to lean back on. It’s not unusual to see a blanket or backpack or other items stashed in the trees up on the hill sides of the park, or litter, which is all over the park now…it seems to go along with the hopelessness of being homeless.

I have witnessed the transformation of the park because I have frequented it everyday now for the past 4 years. Many are numb to it because it has become so common place, but not I.

If I could, I would… create Madeleine’s Morning Rest Stop, where we would serve the homeless (who I call my ‘clients’) with food, clothing, and hope…

  • Each client would be greeted with a glass of Sai Sanjeevini prayer water which would include patterns such as poverty, injustice, dignified housing, and love.
  • Next, a hot shower and clean clothing exchange, while the client is also able to wash his clothes and such. Cleanliness is stressed and is always the first order of business.
  • Now breakfast is served. We encourage a meat free and healthy diet. Omelets, fruit, bagels, and coffee.
  • Each client will get private time with a life coach, and business time to make phone calls, use the computer, or take advantage of using some of our healing tools- Sai Sanjeevini patterns, paper doctor patterns, color and sound therapies, and many more.
  • And lastly, my clients will leave with a bag lunch and bottled water(charged with Sai Sanjeevini prayers), freshly laundered clothes (maybe even a new backpack), a hygiene kit, a resource list with everything from soup kitchens to clean needle exchanges, and a hug.hugs

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