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Volume 6, Issue 31  | April 16, 2021


Orange County Community Foundation addresses homelessness on Giving Day

On April 22, the Orange County Community Foundation (OCCF), based in Newport Brach, will host Help Them Home, a Giving Day for Orange County’s homeless. In its third year, Help Them Home aims to raise $700,000 for a variety of organizations that serve the local homeless population’s greatest needs and the county’s most urgent demands. In the midst of the current COVID-19 pandemic and the unprecedented challenges facing local nonprofits, this Giving Day is an important opportunity for the community to collectively support the nonprofit organizations serving our county’s vulnerable homeless population.

“Homelessness is a public health crisis which is being significantly compounded by the current COVID-19 pandemic,” said Shelley Hoss, president and CEO, OCCF. “It is more urgent than ever that we encourage collaboration among nonprofits to address homelessness and the challenges it brings to those experiencing it.”

Orange County Community Foundation

Click on photo for a larger image

Courtesy of OCCF

According to United to End Homelessness, there are nearly 7,000 homeless individuals – including more than 300 veterans and nearly 700 seniors –in Orange County. However, the growing COVID-19 pandemic creates unique challenges for Orange County’s homeless population, who have limited access to health care and are often elderly or have underlying health conditions, making them especially vulnerable. In addition, with more Orange County residents facing layoffs or furloughs every day, organizations providing support to individuals and families are seeing a significant increase in the need for critical housing and shelter services, as well as surges in food insecurity and a greater number of families facing potential loss of housing. At the same time, these nonprofits are facing a reduction in volunteers and the cancellation or postponement of planned fundraising events that their operations and programming.

The 18 nonprofits participating in the Help Them Home Giving Day include:

–Build Futures - Providing housing for homeless youth.

–Casa Teresa - Providing support for pregnant homeless women.

–City Net - Working to end street-level homelessness.

–Colette’s House/Children’s Home - Supporting homeless single women and their children.

–Families Forward - Helping families regain economic independence.

–Family Assistance Ministries - Providing prevention-focused support for families to move from dependency to self-sufficiency.

–Family Promise of Orange County - Stabilizing families through housing programs and more.

–Friendship Shelter - Bridging housing, emergency shelter and permanent housing.

–Grandma’s House of Hope - Providing housing, food and trauma-informed supportive services to women and children.

–H.I.S. (Homeless Intervention Shelter) House - Offering a transitional living center.

–HomeAid Orange County - Providing housing and community outreach.

–Mercy House - Offering emergency shelter and temporary and permanent housing.

–Pathways of Hope - Providing access to food, shelter and housing for those experiencing hunger and homelessness in North Orange County.

–South County Outreach - Addressing hunger and homelessness.

–SPIN (Serving People In Need) - Serving those in need from crisis to self-sufficiency through housing assistance and street services.

–StandUp for Kids - Working to break the cycle of youth homelessness.

–Thomas House Family Shelter - Providing transitional services, life skills and workforce development and more.

–WISEPlace - Transforming women from homelessness to self-reliance through food, shelter, financial empowerment and employment assistance.

This Giving Day is the latest of a series that, to date, has raised more than $8 million for Orange County nonprofits. OCCF first challenged Orange County residents to “give where their heart lives” during the inaugural iheartoc Giving Day in 2015, raising more than $1.8 million for 347 participating nonprofits in just 30 hours. In 2018, OCCF restructured iheartoc as an expanded opportunity for nonprofits to connect with one another in support of their shared missions. In 2019, the eight collaborative Giving Days raised more than $1.6 million to benefit local organizations.

To give online during the Help Them Home Giving Day, please visit this link.

Additional collaborative Giving Days will be announced over the coming year. For more information, visit www.oc-cf.org/iheartoc.

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