Can coding cure homelessness?

var learntocode = "yes";
var theanswer   = "maybe";

 if (learntocode === theanswer) {

     console.log("Woot, Woot")

 } else {

     console.log("Wrong, guess again, Hans bubby");

I read an interesting article on the other day that had an interesting title, “Learning to code can cure homelessness.

A young man of 23 passes a homeless person everyday on his way to work and wonders if teaching this person to code could be a solution at least to this one person’s homelessness.

Patrick decides to offer this person that he doesn’t know either $100.00 or a chance to be mentored on becoming a developer. I do not know what his motivation is for doing this and I am going to proceed with the premise that Patrick has the hammer and he sees the homeless person as the nail. After all this is what software development is about, solving a problem with the tools that we can put to the best use.

The author of the post at SkillCrush offers a great perspective.  The only way that Patrick could know the reason why this person is homeless is to ask him.  Is it an addiction problem, a mental health issue?  Many other forums across the internet weighed in with their opinion’s and blasted Patrick.  The only way that to really know what Patrick’s intentions are would be to ask him and in the Twitterverse what we live in, we form our own opinions and share them with a click of a button.

Can we  cure homelessness by teaching people to code?  This is a complex issue and I don’t see teaching the homeless as a panacea to curing homelessness, but do we need to castigate Patrick for trying?  If he can make a difference to this one person and get him off the street, where might that lead?

I have read powerful stories of people living on the street and overcoming their addictions and becoming advocates to give others the same chance to turn their lives around.

While I don’t believe that Patrick will be able to mentor this person for an hour a day and turn him into a web developer in 90 days, I hope that he and Leo prove me totally wrong.

As we go through our lives each day and pass the homeless people on the street corner’s instead of turning the other way, can we find the courage to have a conversation with them and see that they are people.  Can we teach them to code and expect that to turn their lives around?

Can we do something other than to look away?  I applaud Patrick for stepping forward and being a stand for the transformation of at least one person’s life.