For many years, at the headquarters of our karate school in New York, students near the holidays do a "walking mediation" where they take food to homeless people on the street.
I've always thought that was a neat idea, but never did anything abou it until now. Christmas Eve I made up a bunch of bag lunches - each with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a Clif bar, a little piece of chocolate, and a small bottle of water - and yesterday I stopped off in the area around the stadiums, Conway Street between Howard and Light Streets, where there are always panhandlers and homeless people out, and gave out a few.
A few of the guys (I saw all men, no women, there) were pretty spaced out. Definitely not all there. I don't know if that's why they ended up on the streets, or if it's a product of their time there. But most were nice, thanked me, said "God bless you". Which actually made me feel more powerless than anything, that such a small act would be so responded to.