represented PIHN on the winner’s podium this year!
We’d like to give a shout-out to Tickets for Kids Charities and their donation of tickets for two of our families to attend the Philadelphia Phillies game about two weeks ago at Citizens Bank Park. We’ve heard wonderful things from those who attended!
In the past 12 months, Tickets for Kids has provided over 200,000 tickets to charities across the U.S. Thank you so much for supporting our families and children everywhere!
PIHN children, teens and college kids are looking great and getting off to an awesome start for the new school year. Students received uniform gift cards and bookbags stuffed with school supplies for the upcoming school year at three PIHN Back to School gatherings held in our Northwest office last week.
SUPER Big thanks to:
Finally, a special thanks to Cradles to Crayons Philadelphia for providing their efforts in making sure that the big kids and thousands of other Philly children, had all they needed too. Together, you have provided us with over 250 bookbags for our children this school year!
We’ve just received a large shipment of brand new bedsheets! PIHN would like to share a super warm thank you to Sheraton Suites, Philadelphia who so generously donated over 20 HUGE trash bags stuffed with brand new, clean blankets for the families we serve!
Unfortunately, not everyone can afford shelter that is suitable during the Winter months and exposure-related conditions can be unavoidable. Thank you so much for helping us warm up those who are vulnerable in our community.
We are particularly looking for you! However, this is room for any interested community member who is willing to serve.
We seek members who share our values and reflect the diversity of our congregations and constituencies to help further PIHN’s mission. If this is you, please email LaVerne M. Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Rachel Falkove at (215) 247-4663 ext. 136
Visit www.pihn5k.greatfeats.com to receive your own fundraising page upon registration for $25. This is a fundraising effort, and we ask that all registrants try their best to raise a minimum of $200 to support PIHN’s Homelessness Prevention program. Every $500 raised prevents an eviction!
All 5k participants will receive a t-shirt upon registration and a finishing medal upon completion. If you wish to compete without the commitment of fundraising, please contact Bob Byrne at (215) 247-4663 ext. 137 or email@example.com to discuss options.
Make a donation. Gifts large and small will be used to support PIHN’s Homelessness Prevention program, which offers targeted financial assistance and support, stops eviction and helps families stay housed.
If you desire, any donation of $1,000 or more can be used as match money to help motivate other runners. Please contact Rachel Falkove at (215) 247-4663 ext. 136 or firstname.lastname@example.org
However you decide to participate, let your friends and family know about this event through conversation and by sharing on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!
“There’s No Place Like Home” 5k is open to all ages and athletic abilities. Come out on October 6th (in your best Oz costume) and join our 5k team. Whether you’re a walker, runner, or roller, we invite our community of all ages to join us for this exciting and fun event
After meeting with members of the Family Service Provider Network (Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network, HELP USA, Darlene Morris, and PEC) the Councilperson pledged to find new resources for families.┬á She convinced City Council the following week to add the $800,000 for prevention services, each year for the next 5 years.
The Philadelphia Office of Homeless Services, which will manage the new funds, had only been able to provide such assistance to 28 percent of those who sought to help.
The Interfaith Service Project is a College Program on Islam including a one-week road trip that engages 25 ShiÔÇÖa, Ismaili Muslims between the ages of 18-25, who come from across the country. The program aims to experimentally teach students more about their faith, heritage, culture, and identity, as well as how they fit among other faith communities. As a part of this experience, students learn more about living their faith through service to other faith communities.┬á Together, these students painted 3 rooms at Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Lawncrest, cleaned the Social Hall and also cleaned the grounds around the church.
According to Helen Tobin, a member of Church Council, ÔÇ£These students were so remarkable. It was truly amazing to see all that got done in just 3 hours of work! ÔÇ£
When the students finished their projects, the students and church members went outside to take photos and celebrate their work.┬á They shared songs about love and peace in Arabic, Hebrew and English, and ended with ÔÇ£Let There Be Peace on EarthÔÇØ. Helen summed up the day saying ÔÇ£This is the way we should live. …WouldnÔÇÖt it be wonderful?ÔÇØ
Thank you to Stephanie Miller and Gary Brooks for recently donating their 2007 Dodge Nitro to PIHN. It’s bright red, very peppy and super dependable. When asked why they are donating their car, Stephanie remarked:
“Our old car would have much more value for a non-profit than what we would receive for it in resale. PIHN is such a good organization and does so many great things to help people. We were confident that you would put the car to good use, or could give it to a family in critical need of one.”
A car really does make a big difference! If you have an old car with a little life left in it and would like to share it with a family in need, please contact Bob Byrne, Director of Operations, at email@example.com or at (215) 247-4663 ext. 137. PIHN will handle matching the car with a family in need and handle all tax paperwork.
Dear Friends of Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network:As you may have heard, on April 1st, 2019, the Homeless Children and Youth Act (HR 2001, HCYA) was reintroduced in the House of Representatives by Congressman Stivers (R-OH-15) and Congressman Loebsack (D-IA-2).
Attached to this email is a letter we hope you will send to your representative asking for his/her support of HR 2001, HCYA. As with the last congressional session, the Government Relations Committee of Family Promise, PIHNÔÇÖs national organization, was able to provide input along with other national partners to assist in the revision of this bill, providing comments on it in draft form. https://www.house.gov/
HR 2001,HCYA would mandate that HUD expand eligibility for homeless programming to include children and families that are experiencing homelessness under the definition provided by the Department of Education. It would also prohibit HUD from prioritizing homeless sub-populations, allowing Continuums of Care to award funding for programming according to the local needs assessment rather than national priorities. Finally, this legislation would revise the definition of chronically homeless familiesÔÇöcurrently the head of household must have a disability to qualify. Under HCYA, anyone in the household could have the disability for the family to qualify. This could potentially open the door to additional resources for the children and the families that we serve.
PIHN is an affiliate of Family Promise representing 242 networks around the country, and has endorsed and advocated for the HCYA under the last Congress. It was bipartisan and bicameral, and passed through the House Financial Services Committee on a bipartisan vote. Having personally experienced homelessness with her family, Kat Lilley (ED of Family Promise in Colorado Springs, National Board Member, and Guest Advisory Council Member) testified to the committee on the need for HCYA. (Click here to watch Kat’s testimony) Unfortunately, the clock ran out on the bill and it was not voted on prior to the end of the congressional session. So, the bill has had to be reintroduced for the new congress.
For more information:
Note: Please open the attached sample letter, complete highlighted portions and email it to your Congressional Representative.
Thank you for ALL that you do!
This past Saturday, PIHN hosted one of our most remarkable Empty Plate dinners ever thanks to our supportive community throughout the city! A truly extraordinary evening of reaching milestones and paving the way toward a future where every child has a place to call home.
GIANT shoutout to our sponsors, the 70(+) restaurants who donated the delicious food, Platemakers, Open Hearts on Tour for our first year of LIVE music, the Religious Leaders Council of Greater Philadelphia for honoring us as a “Zone of Peace”, our large support net of volunteers, and finally to our lead dinner sponsor Giant Food Stores for their amazingly generous 3-year grant award announcement of $81,000 to expand our services in Northeast Philadelphia and for helping our dinner run smoothly.
THANK YOU for all of your tremendous support, we could not have done it alone.
Photos of the evening coming soon…ÔÇìÔÇìÔÇì
Last Wednesday night, an army of volunteers fanned out across the greater Philadelphia area to count the number of people sleeping on the street combined with those sleeping in shelter. The Annual Point-in Time Count (PIT) is required by the Department of housing and Urban Development to measure how municipalities across the country are doing in the national goal to eliminate homelessness and determine funding for services needed for the year ahead.
Family advocates note that the PIT frequently overlooks families, who are a hidden part of the homeless population. If families cannot find room in a shelter or don not want to be divided up, they will hide their homelessness, staying in cars, hotels, substandard properties, sleeping on couches, and living doubled up in other crowded, tense, living situations. They will rarely stay on the street because if they do, they may lose their children to the child welfare system.
PIHN, along with a coalition of 20+ agencies of the Family Service Provider Network (FSPN), participated in a “Families Count – Uncovering Family Homelessness” Press Conference hosted by City Council members Domb and Gym, and joined by Council members Blackwell and Greenlee. This conference was held to reauest city departments to commit to collecting more accurate data to represent themany hidden families and children who interface with their departments, but are not in shelter or visible for the PIT Count.
PIHN alumni, Bruce Thomas, spoke on behalf of the many uncounted families and told of his family’s 10+ year-long journey living with families and friends, without services, supports or a housing plan. Only upon making the decision to come into shelter did things finally begin to come into place for them. After a year in our congregational shelter, Bruce’s family moved into PIHN’s Church Lane House that was so beautifully renovated last sumer thanks to many generous supporters. He, Jen, and the children recently received PHA housing and we are making plans to move in another family in to the house shortly. We would all like to thank Bruce for sharing his family’s story with City Council members and the press.
We would like to give a well-deserved CONGRATULATIONS to PIHN Alumni, Erica Bush, on winning the shiny, red 2015 Toyota donated by Geico and Service King through the National Auto Body AssociationÔÇÖs Recycled Rides Program! Erica was awarded her new car at our 2018 Empty Bowl Dinner held at United Lutheran Seminary after submitting a carefully written essay describing her experiences defeating homelessness, and explaining the numerous ways a new set of wheels would benefit her with general transit and her commute to a new position as an RN. Erica had this to say:
“Dear Friends from Geico, Service King, Recycled Rides and the National Auto Body Association,
My daughter and I would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your kindness and generosity. I cannot find the right words to truly tell you how grateful I am to be the recipient of this reliable, shiny, great car!
Your selfless acts of kindness have been shown in every way. This car was prepped by people with huge hearts willing to help someone. I thank you for all of your time, thoughtfulness, and expertise. You have helped me in a tremendous way.
As a person who has experienced homelessness twice (many life struggles) to becoming a recent college graduate with a living wage job offerÔÇöI want to let you know that this car will get me to that job, bring stability and make a huge difference in my life.
And of course, to my friends at Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network and the Inter-Faith Housing Alliance:┬á You are all beautiful people. Thank you so very much for accompanying me on my 10- year journey to stability.┬á It sometimes takes a village and this village has clearly been there for me!!!
Erica’s story is what PIHN strives to narrate with all the work we do. We could not be more proud of Erica for overcoming her fight with homelessness and would like to thank Recycled Rides, as well as Geico this year, for delivering refurbished cars to alumni from our program over the years.┬á Best of luck to you with your new position Erica!
(PIHN’s 2018 Empty Bowl Dinner)
Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network’s 20th Annual Empty Bowl Dinner ushered in this Season of Thanks for PIHNÔÇÖs community of families, volunteers and supporters.. One attendee described the experience as ÔÇ£like being in a roomful of love.ÔÇØ The dinner was a feast for our eyes and bellies-with soups and desserts donated by 65 local restaurants and community groups, dished out in beautiful bowls donated from over 25 different pottery programs and clay artists.┬á┬á Even the beautiful floral center pieces were donated by two local garden clubs
Congratulations to PIHN alum, Erica Bush, on winning the shiny, red 2015 Toyota donated by Geico and Service King through the National Auto Body AssociationÔÇÖs Recycled Rides Program!
Many thanks to our host United Lutheran Seminary, and for all the tremendous assistance we have received from our Corporate Sponsors, Advertisers, Restaurant Donors, Bread & Cake makers, Home Bakers, Soup Schleppers and our 100+ volunteers! Kudos to our Empty Bowl Committee headed by our Queen of Soups, Cynthia LaLone, and assisted by LaVerne M. Jones and Shirlyn Swann. Shout outs to PIHN staff: Bob Byrne, Christian Gordon Scott, Emmanuel Philor, Deb Kish Silver, Keyonnee Thalia, who worked hard to promote the dinner and keep all running smoothly.
Additionally, a BIG thanks to Arcadia University for hosting their own 25th annual Empty Bowl Dinner in support of PIHN 2 nights before our dinner on November 14th. It was a great week of pottery, fellowship and soup! Both events together, raised nearly $40,000 in support of PIHNÔÇÖs work to prevent and alleviate family homelessness.
Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network would like to give a huge THANK YOU to all who participated in our first annual “There’s No NPlace Like Home” 5k! It was so rewarding to see all of the Oz costumes in support of PIHN’s Homelessness Prevention Program. Since beginning our goal to raise $10,000, we are very pleased to announce that it has been far surpassed. This year, PIHN has raised a total $14,733 in funds to prevent homelessness in Philadelphia, and we could not have done it without you! Your steps have made milestones, and we couldn’t be more grateful for our AMAZING community!
Check out our Photo Album [HERE] and on our Facebook!
Thanks guys, for moving families, cleaning, organizing, and building some genuine connections with so many of the kids in our program! We want to wish the very best to David who is headed to England to study music production, and Jakob who is headed to Germany pursuing his life in fine arts. Please take care guys,┬áAuf Wiedersehen!
PIHN owns a house in a rapidly developing section of Germantown that was gifted to us 10 years ago. It has already been home to 5 families who are now homeowners and/or market rate tenants. The house is waiting for it’s next family but needs some structural rehab that must be done before we move in the Thomas family of 6. They have been in our shelter program for 6 months and were without a home for one year prior.
We are only $500 away!┬áOur PIHN community has shown SO much support for our house rehab and as we are closing in on our online goal of $10,000, we owe it all to you!┬áWe are making tremendous progress┬áwith our house renovations and expect to move the Thomas Family into their new home within the next 3 weeks.┬áLike all renovation projects, we have discovered a few new issues and would like to exceed our goal in order to minimize the loan amount. With just a little bit more to go, we can provide a comfortable living space for the Thomas family!
Thank you for participating in creating an affordable home for
a wonderful, hard-working family!
Back to School time can be very stressful for low income, hard-working families because of the need to make many purchases outside of their budget in order to ready their children for a new school year. PIHN Alumni decided to take matters ito their own hands by organizing a series of flea markets with all proceeds going toward purchasing uniform vouchers! We welcome the help of our community by donating household items, clothes, children’s toys and also by volunteering. Please contact keyonnee at (215) 450-0171 or firstname.lastname@example.org, and feel free to drop by and shop too! Thank you so much for ALL that you do!
Future Dates To Be Announced.