Cincinnati, Ohio: Local Activists Gather to Help the Homeless in “Op Helping Hands”.

Cincinnati, Ohio (RustBelt) –  A group of local activists from Awakened Cincinnatians as well as some members of the Southern Ohio Militia gathered at Piatt Park in Cincinnati on a frigid and windy Saturday to help feed and clothe those who are less fortunate. “Op Helping Hands” as it is called by the organizers, is held every month during the winter and aims to give some aid and comfort to those in need. Op Helping Hands is organized mainly by Awakened Cincinnatians, an activist group which organizes and participates in many actions in the Cincinnati area including protests and marches against police brutality and government overreach. This event was also attended by members of the Southern Ohio Militia who brought several hamburgers, pizza, and even went across the street to buy some BBQ to hand out.

 I spoke to a few of the attendees and asked what it was that brought them out. An activist with Awakened Cincinnatians and one of TRBT’s own contributing editors, Lessa Leigh, has been working Op Helping Hands since October of 2015. She said “We feed anyone who asks or comes up to us. You can be homeless or have a home but be food insecure or have a home and food but be hungry in that moment. We feed each other. Many of our members are fantastic cooks, and they will bring their home-made stews, soups, casseroles, corn bread, chilies, rice and beans, pastas, and so forth. We’re serving good food, and it’s served with love.”

 Lessa also told me a little bit more about Awakened Cincinnatians, the group hosting the event. “Awakened Cincinnatians supports a lot of other activists in the area. We attend BLM:C events, AIM events, Anti-Animal cruelty events, anti-Monsanto events, anti-corporate events etc. However, Op Helping Hands is our baby. Every event is the same and different. It’s the same in terms of

location (Piatt Park), time (2-4pm), day (Saturdays September-April, except Thanksgiving Thursday), but it’s different in terms of who attends, who brings what, and coordination.” She said.

As people came to get food and clothing, a large anti-Trump protest marched by with at least two dozen police officers in tow, a staunch reminder of the troubled times we are living in. In the midst of all the strife, hardship, and animosity, Awakened Cincinnatians bring people together to do something that is in this journalist’s opinion, absolutely wonderful. If you live in the Cincinnati area and want to help out, you can visit Awakened Cincinnatians on Facebook and join the event. The next Op Helping Hands will be on Thanksgiving day and is being called An Awakened Thanksgiving. If you are interested in meeting some genuinely good hearted people while helping those less fortunate, you are welcome to come out. I know I will be there!

 This report prepared by Mathieu C. Hubin for The Rust Belt Tribune.