Shelter Sunday’s Coming Oct. 14, 21

BY ELIZABETH DONOGHUE

DAILY HAMPSHIRE GAZETTE

OCTOBER 8TH, 2018

 

Ear year on Shelter Sunday, community members and volunteers raise money for the homeless and hungry in Amherst and Northampton.

Oct. 14 will mark the 27th annual Northampton Shelter Sunday, while the Amherst version, being held for the 29th time, takes place Oct. 21.

Shelter Sunday for Northampton serves the city and the surrounding communities.

“We’ve had a great deal of success the past 26 years and we hope to equal that success,” Anne White said on behalf of the Northampton Shelter Sunday coalition.

This year’s goal is to raise $50,000.  Mailings sent across Northampton, Florence, and Leeds will include the Coalition’s activities and help reach their fiscal goal.

“Shelter Sunday is a wonderful joint effort,” said Amy Swisher, the vice president of community relations for ServiceNet.

Shelter Sunday was created in response to long shelter wait lists and increased patronage at the soup kitchen.  All proceeds benefit Grove Street Inn (ServiceNet), the Interfaith Emergency Shelter (Friends of Hampshire County Homeless and ServiceNet), MANNA Soup Kitchen, and the Single Room Occupancy Outreach Project (CHD).

Volunteers are needed and encouraged to participate.

Shelter Sunday, Swisher said, “is a wonderful chance for people to come together.”

Amherst’s Shelter Sunday is put on by Craig’s Doors, the agency that operates the Craig’s Place homeless shelter, and will benefit both Craig’s Doors and the Center for Human Development’s Not Bread Alone, the soup kitchen located at the First Congregational Church.

Jade Lovett, executive director of Craig’s Doors, said students, primarily from the University of Massachusetts, will canvass the town, gathering at 10 a.m. Oct. 21 at the Fine Arts Center to get packets and a short pep talk before heading out.

Robert Stover, program supervisor for Not Bread Alone, said meals are served Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, as well as Thanksgiving and Christmas.

“For many years, the money raised by Shelter Sunday has provided a substantial portion of Not Bread Alone’s budget,” Stover said. “It is vital to our program that Shelter Sunday be a success.”

Interested volunteers in Northampton should contact Anne (413)387-1168 or email volunteer@northamptonsheltersunday.org.  A brief training is required to volunteer.  Training will be held at 10 a.m. on Oct 21 at the UMass Fine ARts Center lobby.

Donations are accepted by mail and online.

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