Imagine only having a car or tent for you and your children to live in
and the forecast is “bitter cold.” You’ve lost your job and don’t have
family to turn to for help. How will you get through this night - and
hard in Harford County to help families in such situations to
change the outcome of their stories from bleak to hopeful.
“In the tumultuous economic times we’re facing, unemployment
and homelessness are becoming larger issues for both our nation
and for the state of Maryland,” says Anne Marie Vomero-Battis,
“The face of poverty has changed to reflect families and children
who have lost everything – their source of income, their home,
and their hope.” Her goal for the event is to let these families know
they’re not alone and have not been forgotten and to challenge the
local community to lead our fallen neighbors toward hopefulness and self-sufficiency. The goal is to give a hand up, not a hand out,” she says. “Will you spend some time with us – a few hours or even a night out in the cold with us - to raise awareness and funds for our neighbors in need?”
On February 10 – 12, Sharing Hope Foundation is hosting the Home Sweet Nowhere: Frozen and Forgotten in Our Community "Box City" event, with several locations throughout Harford County. During this event, volunteers from Sharing Hope Foundation, as well as several other partnering local agencies and folks from all walks of life, will camp outside in cardboard boxes for 24 to 36 hours to raise awareness and funds for those among us who have no place to call home. At this event, attendees can talk to community leaders committed to helping those in need and get information about available community resources in order to receive assistance or to volunteer. Folks can also drop off any new or clean and gently used blankets, sleeping bags, warm winter gear and new first aid products, toilet paper, toiletries, and unopened “ready-to-eat” types of food. At each location during this event, Sharing Hope Foundation will be selling hot chocolate and baked goods to the public. Anyone wishing to participate and volunteer a few or more hours at one any of the locations is asked to contact Anne Marie at AnneMarie.SharingHope@yahoo.com or 410-688-3478. The more people involved, the greater the impact to our community.
At this time, two host locations have been confirmed with approval pending for several more:
Mt. Zion United Methodist Church
1645 E. Churchville Rd., Bel Air, MD 21015
Box City Campout from Friday, February 10 - 6:00 p.m. until Saturday, February 11 - 6:00 p.m.
Joppa-Magnolia Fire Company
1403 Old Mountain Road South, Joppa MD 21085
Box City Campout from Friday, February 10 - 6:00 p.m. until Sunday, February 12 - 12:00 p.m.
Sharing Hope Foundation is an all-volunteer organization that provides a voice for our neighbors experiencing hunger and homelessness in Harford County by partnering with other local humanitarian organizations to create a “Circle of Care” for people in crisis who lack basic human needs. The “Circle of Care” concept seeks to address the multi faceted needs experienced by at-risk and vulnerable individuals and families to allow them to transition from homelessness to independence. Sharing Hope has many volunteer and sponsorship opportunities available. Two of the largest opportunities are the ‘One Church One Home’ program and the Harford Fall Festival, an annual community event every October. Created by Mrs. Vomero-Battis is 2007, the Harford Fall Festival is an old-fashioned, family-oriented, and budget-friendly country fair. However, this event is more than just for fun; it’s a community outreach opportunity to raise money and awareness for Harford County’s neighbors in need, as the proceeds are donated to other area non-profits that are making a difference. (www.HarfordFallFestival.org). Mrs. Vomero-Battis is also the Program Director for the ‘One Church One Home’ program, a newly created and quickly growing transitional housing program. She connects churches, businesses, and individuals together to help the homeless in Harford County move themselves from homelessness to independence by providing compassion, spiritual support, and housing options. “It’s my goal to help end homelessness in our community; no one should be without basic human needs…period,” she states.