March 27, 2012 – 9:01 pm

I used to work for a consulting company, that meant lots of traveling. I accumulated lots of travel points and gained status. It also meant lots and lots of travel toiletries! FREE toiletries. I like free stuff. This is not exclusive to asians. I can’t help it. I’m compelled to take them. But I ended up with bags and bags of random toiletries sitting in the corner of a room. What to do with all those small shampoos, conditioners, soap bars, etc?!

One day, Vision’s small groups did a service project. We walked around the city to talk to the homeless we encountered and gave away bags filled with a sandwich, bottle of water and socks to the homeless. I had an AH-HA moment (rare, i know). Our group also added my toiletries to the mix.

I still had plenty left and was still accumulating so I asked a friend who lives and works in Guatemala if maybe they could use them. They said “sure, we teach workshops on hygiene”

My head still has trouble wrapping around the fact that people in this world, in the US, and in the grossly abundant NYC, don’t have what I consider a basic necessity. So I challenged myself to stop being lazy and write a page on this blog with tips on how to collect and distribute toiletries. HERE

It’s not hard to do, but sometimes the simple stuff needs to be written out and remind myself and others of the easy things we can do to help “the least of these brothers and sisters”

Next time you stay in a hotel and decide to take the toiletries home, I challenge you to pass them along to your local shelter, soup kitchen, the homeless person asking for money or food in the train, or me and I’ll pass them to organizations who can use them.