We usually ask you to look at the numbers- the number of families in the system, the number that marks MRVP funding…the numbers that make up the Massachusetts family shelter system.
But today- we are going to ask you to look at the pattern of these numbers. And then we are going to ask for your help.
Non-profit organizations like Homes for Families see an increase in donations at the end of the year. Logically, people donate because the weather reminds us how tragic it is for families to sleep in places other than a home, it is the season for giving, and for other reasons that make sense to those donating. And that support is always appreciated.
However, while organizations see a spike in donations- and even a spike in concern for the issue- during these winter months, the family shelter system sees a spike in families utilizing the EA system during the summer months. We have theories about why this is, of course: Landlords are more flexible during those unbearably cold winter months, relatives or friends that let families sleep in their house don’t want to interrupt the child’s school year, and funding for prevention programs is often depleted by the end of the fiscal year.
So instead of looking at the numbers, this time we ask you to look at the patterns. The graph above highlights families accepted in to EA during Fiscal Year 2014 and the majority of Fiscal Year 2015. The graph below shows that this spike is consistent over time.
So as school ends and summer begins, we ask you to consider supporting Homes for Families at this critical time.
Visioning Day is a one of a kind event that convenes families overcoming homelessness, shelter providers, and community members to reflect on the previous fiscal year and strategize for the new fiscal year. And with more families utilizing the system when Visioning Day is held, it is incredibly important that we provide the opportunity to raise their voice to end family homelessness.
Visioning Day is a free event, it has to be. In fact, we give transportation stipends and free childcare to families and others in need of financial assistance to make sure there are no barriers to keep anyone from coming.
This year, we are providing the community with the opportunity to support this event. As you know, HFF relies on the voices of families to guide our advocacy agenda- and Visioning Day is where it all begins. Without that voice, we cannot stay true to our mission to ensure that families have a seat at the policy making table.
You have the chance to catalyze a unique event that ensures that HFF hears from our community- an event that ensures that all families have a say in ending homelessness. With your help, we can make that true. We ask that you make a donation to HFF, with 100% of the money raised going to Visioning Day costs.
Checks can be mailed to:
Homes for Families
14 Beacon St, Suite 615
Boston, MA 02130
Thank you in advance for supporting HFF and the mission to end family homelessness.