I am sure I am far from the only one who has encountered people in my life who have consistently refused help with a problem even though they clearly needed it.

And in some of the worst cases, it does take sleeping on the floor of a bus terminal to finally realize that accepting help is the only way to change things for the better.

As much as it is a difficult topic for all of us to discuss, it does make me feel better that there are groups out there looking to improve the lives of South Jersey residents even if they have appeared to hit rock bottom.

The sad truth is that most of these individuals consist of people with financial or legal troubles, substance abuse, or mental health disorders that have not been treated.

So it warms my heart to say that Volunteers of America and NJ Transit Police Department have been actively looking to give homeless people an option to get professional help right here in South Jersey.

Professionals attempt to make contact with individuals right there on the spot and offer them transportation to immediately start the recovery process. The problem is that not everyone is willing but little by little, an amazing difference is being made.

Gary Denamen of NJTPD went to a whole new level of committed and went undercover with the homeless for an entire month doing research to learn about their biggest needs and how VOA can cater to those needs when recruiting to get people help.

“A lot of frustration (from the people on the street) was that all these programs are great, all these agencies are great,” said Denamen. “But (the agencies) only want to help us when they want to, not when we want the help.”

The best part of utilizing help is that VOA is able to connect these people with resources that will help immediately as opposed to waiting until there is availability or relying on the public legal system.

Causes like these are always looking for others who are willing to lend a helping hand so for more information, check out Volunteers of America or the original article at PressOfAtlanticCity.com.

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