Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day; teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime. Building shelters is like giving a man/woman a fish: a handout. Teaching them to be self-sufficient would be more rewarding — not only for them, but also for the community. It would build their self-esteem and self-confidence and teach them independence from living on the streets.
Instead of spending megabucks on shelters, create a program much like "The Other Side Academy" (see "A food truck with a cause," The Tribune, April 14). This nonprofit is designed to help addicts overcome their habits and become productive members of society. It is patterned after the Delancey Street Foundation that operates in multiple communities throughout the nation.