Just a “bandage” is the way columnist Brian Hicks describes the countless hours and donations that volunteers and faith-based groups provide to support and give a hand up to the homeless and other families in need.

I have witnessed and participated in a number of events that I would not describe as a bandage. That would be obvious to anyone who is able to witness the appreciation of people who receive help from others. That sadly is not what is written about or reported in news outlets.

I find it ironic that Brian Hicks praises One80 Place. He speaks of the good they do serving 1,000 meals on only a $7.5 million budget. Meanwhile, the volunteers and faith-based organizations he downgrades do that in a month without tax dollars.

He mentions local experts and says that this kind of charity sets up cycle of dependence and that it has centralized it. I’m not sure having the problem centralized is a bad idea, instead of spreading it all over the Lowcountry with it becoming even more unmanageable.

One80 Place has its positives, but it helps people who fit in its square box, and not every homeless person does. One80 Place can be part of the solution for some people, but it is not the only solution for the homeless.

Brian Hicks complains that all the help and donations have brought the homeless from behind Walmart on James Island, and out of the woods in West Ashley, as if he wants them to go back. I guess out of sight means problem solved.

I know of multiple tent city residents who have been placed in housing in the last 60 days. This is because of the efforts of four ladies, and the help they have received from the community, with no budget. I’m sure there are countless more whom other volunteers and faith-based organizations have helped find homes.

Yes, all the volunteers have made it easier for individuals having to stay at tent city, which was the objective. We should all be proud of our efforts. We are not finished helping, but just getting started.

It is not a bandage. Actually making a difference and trying to solve a problem is more accurate.

Ron Austin

Jardiniere Walk

Mount Pleasant