I was asked to go and do a talk with a group of NAB bank workers about my story and how The Big Issue has helped me. I remember a few weeks ago Danya calling me and asking and then said she is based in Melbourne and would be flying in for the day. I hung up and started thinking she's flying in for the day 'how big is this thing' OHNO what have I agreed to. I started imagining 1,000's of people and me on a stage with a mic and not being able to talk because of fear. Haha
I called back a few days ago and said “um Danya umm how many people are going to be there? Danya couldn't see me because I was on the phone but I was scared still thinking 1,000's of people. “ well if it's anything like the Melbourne one it's only going to have about...(now the next words came quickly but it seemed like minutes haha) 12 people. I start thinking YES getting all excited about it only being 12 I hung up and kept thinking only 12 that's great. Then I thought I have never spoke at one of these before and a group of 12 sitting in a round area wanting to hear about The Big Issue.
I Meet Danya outside and thought this is going to be easy, go in and say my story and how great the Big Issue was and out all within 30 minutes. Danya says “I'll talk for about 10 minutes then you talk for about 1 ½ hours.” That fear came back the whole time thinking 1 ½ talking about what, OHNO what have I got myself into.
Now don't get me wrong I love to talk, in fact many people have been late for work because I didn't stop talking. Ha ha But this was a room of strangers I didn't know. So I kept thinking I wouldn't have been invited if they thought I couldn't do it. I went in and shaked everyone's hand with the biggest smile and even said a few jokes to quickly fit in. I must say they all were great people and I felt comfortable very quickly.
I started telling about my story and I noticed two of them started to tear. That's when I realised why I'm here, to show that homeless are normal people that just hit hard times or something happened to them and it broke there spirit. So I started talking about some of the great people I know that are homeless and some of the things that have happen to them. Right there and then it wouldn't have mattered if there was 1,000's of people because I was there to voice about homeless people. I said a horror story that had happened two nights ago and then a great story about Phoebe and her friends, I really felt everyone in the room started thinking differently towards the homeless. There not brought up to be homeless, there hitting hard times and because of the Big Issue there's help, I'm not talking hand outs because for me it's not only the money I get, it's the fact that I'm earning money again. I can hold my head up high and say I'm a worker.
Then came the question times. Everyone had at least one really great question which I answered the best I could. The whole time there I was trying to show people 'yes I'm homeless, yes I'm nice and No I'm not the only one.'
They thanked me and each and everyone of them shaked my hand and said thank you for telling them my story and about some of the things that really do happen when you live on the streets. Walking out Danya was saying how good it was and I will get $50 put in my bank. YES what a great day.
I would like to say. Sometimes saying “hi” at the right time to someone could turn there life around for the better. There's no better feeling then knowing you have helped someone and the reward is seeing what they become. Not all want help but there's a lot that need it. I'm not talking money I'm talking about something more valuable 'time'
I hope you all have a great day and thank you for reading my blog. If you like it please pass it on to other's because I love to share.
Grant the Polite Guy.