Prof made a comment the other night that he had not seen a single homeless person in Cyprus. A quick search on Google, and there you have it: “National Report on Homelessness & Housing Exclusion in Cyprus” published by Pancyprian Welfare Council.
According to the report, there is no such thing as homelessness in Cyprus. The terminology doesn’t exist in Cypriot’s minds or culture. The report goes onto say that other people groups who immigrate to Cyprus may find it hard to find housing. But there are plenty of NGOs and other programs to help people find suitable housing.
In fact, crime is not an issue either. (Remember my blogpost on “South African Food & Culture?” I said that people leave their car doors open to run in and buy an item quickly. People keep telling stories of how they forget to lock their car doors or doors in their own homes at night. And when they go back home to their country in Europe, they have to change their mindsets to be more alert and aware of their surroundings.
So compare that to the U.S. If you begin to type the word “homelessness” in Google, the phrase “homelessness in America” will pop up second. Right away, you know this is an ever-prevalent issue in the U.S. I am sure there are plenty of reasons why it’s such an issue in the U.S. and not in Cyprus.
I think that the U.S.’s mentality of one’s self is greater than the good of the whole (or at least family) rings so true. In Cyprus, it’s quite the opposite. It makes me wonder if more U.S. citizens strive to help another fellow man, woman, or child for the greater good then what a difference it would make.