This year has been HomeAid Atlanta’s biggest year to date. In addition to five shelter projects completed to provide homes for Atlanta’s homeless population, HomeAid Atlanta’s outreach initiatives extended farther than ever. This achievement would not be possible without donations from Atlanta’s generous home building industry and the metro Atlanta community.
HomeAid Atlanta completed 16 Care Days from March through November. HomeAid Care Days are volunteer workdays that provide free-of-charge maintenance and repairs for nonprofit facilities that serve Atlanta’s homeless population. Approximately 500 volunteers were engaged in providing over $158,000 worth of work through Care Days this year. Frequent HomeAid Atlanta volunteer Courtney Rogers said, “I appreciate what HomeAid does, and the ways I’m able to help. It’s so nice to have such an effective, hands-on way to give back within the building industry and really make a tangible difference in so many people’s lives.”
Just before Mother’s Day, HomeAid Atlanta’s 18th Annual Essentials Drive collected 175,000 diapers, wipes, baby food items, and more for homeless babies and their families. Donations were collected from April 29 – May 7 at more than 60 Atlanta area locations. A team of 35 volunteers sorted, counted, and packed the items, which were delivered to 23 metro Atlanta homeless service providers with help from UPS. Marlene White, Decatur Cooperative Ministry Executive Director expressed gratitude upon receiving Essentials Drive donations. “THANK YOU for the amazing items donated to Decatur Cooperative Ministry as part of this year’s Essentials Drive,” she said. “Year after year, HomeAid Atlanta and its supporters have continued to surpass our expectations and we consider HomeAid to be one of our greatest allies in the fight to alleviate homelessness in metro Atlanta.”
On November 19, Bank of America volunteers joined HomeAid Atlanta to assemble and donate 1,000 HomeAid CareKits. CareKits include necessities such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, adhesive bandages, bottled water, snacks, socks donated by Bombas, and other items. All of these items are in great need of those experiencing homelessness. The CareKits assembly event took place in November as part of HomeAid’s Homelessness Awareness month. This was the sixth time Bank of America partnered with HomeAid Atlanta for CareKits. This collaboration has produced 6,800 HomeAid CareKits since 2014. CareKits have been donated to nine Atlanta organizations serving homeless families and individuals over the last six years.
Karen McLane, HomeAid Atlanta Director of Community Outreach just wrapped up her first year on staff. “When I was hired, I did not know what to expect other than I would be busy,” said Karen. “The foundation that HomeAid Atlanta has built over the years was evident and made for a smooth transition into my new role. We are fortunate that many people within Atlanta’s building industry want to be part of our work. New relationships with shelter providers and new volunteer groups opened up opportunities for continued growth this year. I feel honored and grateful to be a part of the HomeAid Atlanta team and our significant growth this year. I look forward to doing even more in 2020.”