I have read the recent letters to the editor concerning why people are homeless: drugs, bad decisions, lazy, choice etc., but what is the average age of a homeless person in America? National statistics indicate it is 9 years old. Our area schools report over 1,500 homeless children.
A 9-year-old is not lazy; a 6-year old is not “on drugs;” a 6-month old did not choose to be homeless. They are our future and unless we help them, our future is as dim as theirs. The people you see on the street, in camps, were children once and as the Olympian editorial of Jan. 27 points out, “Every human being has a distinct story.”
I represent Help Us Move In Inc, a local non-profit that began 18 years ago at First United Methodist Church Olympia. Last year, our supporters donated over $100,000 to Family Support Center, helping 606 children and their families escape homelessness. HUMI is issuing a $50,000 challenge to this community to provide funds to help another 600 children.
At 1:30 p.m. March 24, a Celebration Concert will be held at First United Methodist Church. You can join our efforts by coming to the Celebration Concert or mailing a check to HUMI c/o First United Methodist Church, 1224 Legion Way SE, Olympia, WA 98501 or Help Us Move In, 2645 Chambers Lake Ln SE, Lacey, WA 98503. For information, call Sarah Scherer, Executive Director, at 360-890-1174.
(Sarver is Chairman of the HUMI board)