In our last blog post, we shared our thoughts on the keys to ending homelessness. To recap, although homelessness is most often the result of individual circumstances, we firmly believe that its solution can only be found in community (See More From This Post >>>). A supportive community of care; meeting basic needs, connections to resources providing needed homeless services, and the generosity and kindness of the local community at large...solutions that empower homeless to get back to life, to find hope again. At New Directions, we strive everyday to do our part in providing the community needed to end homelessness. But we can’t do it alone. We need you...
At New Directions, we love engaging and involving people like you in the fight to end homelessness. Looking to join us? The following are ways that you can help the homeless this fall and make a significant impact on homelessness in our community.
1. Know the Facts
The first step to resolving any issue is education. Homelessness, an issue often making local and national headlines, is no exception. In fact...did you know that 1 out of every 3 Americans is just a few paychecks away from being homeless? Homelessness can happen to anyone...maybe even you! The National Alliance to End Homelessness is a great resource for becoming more educated about homelessness. (For starters, read the report on The State of Homelessness in the US: 2018 >>>)
2. Use Your Creativity to Make a Difference Through Design
Calling all artists, designers, and creatives! Our 5th Annual Compassion Through Fashion (CTF) event is coming up March 14, 2020 and YOU can be part of it! Designing a show-stopping, hand-crafted entry will not only be great fun, but will also help raise both funds and awareness for the homeless. Interested? If you are not creative, you can still come to enjoy the show and learn more about how New Directions is serving our homeless community! (Learn More About Compassion Through Fashion >>>)
3. Go Bowling (No, Seriously!)
Sometimes the best way to make a difference is all about having fun! On Monday nights, now through November 18th, 810 Bowling is hosting a fundraiser to raise money to buy bikes...yes, that’s right...bikes. At any 810 location, on Mondays from 6-9 pm, you get 2 bowling games (shoe rental not included) for a $10 donation to New Directions and The Rolling Forward Project. This project is about providing bike transportation for our homeless clients. We partner with Coastal Carolina University’s Sociology Department to make this great resource available for our clients. (To learn more about The Rolling Forward Project, visit their Facebook page >>> and to RSVP to the event visit our event page >>> )
4. Get Involved At The Shelters
There are so many ways to get involved. Gather your friends or a group from your church, civic clubs, or other community groups and sign up to cook a meal at our Men’s Shelter. And if you’re more hands on, countless opportunities exist during the week for you to volunteer with New Directions. Whatever your skills or passions may be, you can use them to create community for our homeless clients while they live in our shelters. Give us a call, or fill out our volunteer form to learn more about how you can get involved.
5. Indulge Your Amazon Prime Addiction
Christmas is coming up, so as you complete your holiday shopping, make a difference at no cost to you by shopping with Amazon Smile. Visit smile.amazon.com and add “New Directions of Horry County” as your selected charity. We receive 0.5% of the value of eligible purchases, making it an easy way to help the homeless while buying items you need (or simply treating yourself!). While you’re there, check out our Amazon wish list. If you’re feeling generous add an item to your cart to meet an essential need for operation of our four shelter facilities (Shop our Amazon Wish List >>>)
6. Participate in Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week
Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week is November 18th-22nd. The week is centered around raising awareness of hunger and homeless issues in our community. During this week, we will hold our annual “Fill The Truck” campaign, inviting you and other community members to donate items that we need. We hope to collect lots of canned goods and paper products. Join us in the fight to end hunger & homelessness by helping us “Fill the Truck”!
7. Support Agencies that Provide Help to the Homeless
We partner with dozens of agencies in the fight to end homelessness. All of us together to provide community and assistance, not only to the homeless, but all people in need. We can do so much more collectively than alone! Donations of food, clothing, household items, cleaning products, hygiene & toiletries, office and school supplies all have a place where they are needed. Not sure what to donate or where to send it? Give us a call - 843-945-4902 - so we can point you in the right direction. We refer donations to partner agencies whose clients can most readily use what you have to donate!
8. Be A Friend
Remember that our homeless neighbors are real people too. Eye contact, a warm smile, a handshake, or a short conversation, uplift and empower the homeless by showing that they are valued and cared for. Help reduce the trauma of homelessness by being a friend to the homeless you meet. Refer them to us or have them call 211, a resource call center that can direct them to any community resource that is available.
9. Give Back on #GivingTuesday
Giving Tuesday is a global day of giving celebrated the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. Individuals, groups, and businesses give of their time, money, or goods to help and promote the organizations and causes they care about. The Giving Tuesday movement is one of our favorite days of the year. For us, it’s not just about the money or donations we receive (although that is a big plus!) - Giving Tuesday is about the community coming together to effect change, to express gratitude, by putting their time, donations, and most of all, their passions, to good use, making an enormous collective difference and helping those in need. What better way could there be to kick off a season of giving? Be on the lookout for our Giving Tuesday plans. We look forward to seeing how you give back on #GivingTuesday.
10. Finalize Your Year-End Giving Plans
It’s never too early to start planning your year-end giving. Make plans to end 2019 on a high note by helping the homeless through your charitable contribution to New Directions. Your tax-deductible gift will help move people from shelter, to hope, to change in 2020 and beyond. (If you’d like, you can join our year-end effort early by giving via the button below:)
We hope these ideas will help you “fall” into the habit of helping the homeless. In the fight to end homelessness, every person has the power to make a difference. Will you?