It’s that time of year again, the Combined Federal Campaign starts soon and we just wanted to remind you that The National Alliance to End Homelessness will be participating again this year! All federal employees have the opportunity to participate in the world’s largest giving program.
Last year federal workers pledged $69,314.52 toward our goal of ending homelessness. To those of you who helped us reach this incredible number, thank you! This year we need your help again. Remember to look for us under “Homelessness, National Alliance to End,” #10022 in your CFC pledge book and on your local campaign website. You may also see some of us at your upcoming CFC Fair.
If you’re not a federal employee you can still give! Many companies have their own matching campaigns that allow you to double your own person contribution. You can also remind friends and family who are federal employees to remember us when filling out their card.
On behalf of the National Alliance to End Homelessness, I would like to express our deepest gratitude to you, our supporters and donors. In this tough economic climate, the Alliance has been able to defy the odds and carry out our program goals without cutting back. That is because we have the support of such wonderful and committed donors. Thank you.
Here at the Alliance, we know that budgets are tight and there are many, many charities doing great work. As a donor, you have a multitude of choices for where to invest your money. Thank you for choosing the National Alliance to End Homelessness.
Your donation makes a difference. Your donation helps people like Robin and her three young children who were evicted from their apartment when Robyn lost her job and could no longer pay the rent. Robin’s family had to turn to a shelter in Washington, DC for a place to sleep.
After spending months in shelter, Robyn’s family was able to move into their own apartment. That’s because she had the help of a local nonprofit organization that assigned Robyn a case manager to help her get back on her feet. Once Robyn got her family settled in a stable place to live, she found a job as a part-time line cook at a local university. Her excellence on the job led to a promotion to full-time cook.
Robyn loves her job and she also loves that it allows her to pay the rent and support her family. She is thankful for the help she received when times were hard. The help she received was critical to finding a solution to their homelessness – a home and a job.
The Alliance works with organizations across the country to help families and individuals just like Robyn. Jointly, we are making it possible to prevent and end homelessness in America. Thank you again for supporting this work. Your commitment to our shared goal of ending homelessness is inspiring.
You can end 2011 on a high note by making a gift to prevent and end homelessness. Here at the Alliance, we are ever thankful for the wonderful supporters and donors who allow our work to continue. Thank you for your past support.
As many of you know, 2011 was a challenging year for preventing and ending homelessness. Despite the challenges, progress was made and we need your help to continue our efforts.
Tomorrow, December 31st, is the last day to make a tax deductable gift in 2011. Your donation will contribute to proven solutions that can, and will, bring an end to homelessness in America.
Your kindness has an enormous impact. Your year-end gift will give hope to the almost 640,000 Americans who are homeless each night.
As the Development Coordinator for the Alliance, I often respond to the question, “If I donate, where does my money go?”
Today I would like to share the answer to that question with you. Here at the National Alliance
to End Homelessness, we work hard to ensure that the majority of contributions go directly to support our programs to prevent and end homelessness. Last year, our expenses totaled $2,896, 410. Ten percent of that number, or $287,629, was spent on administration and fundraising while 90 percent, or $2,608,781, was spent on programming.
What does the Alliance consider programming and how is that 90 percent broken down? Our programs fall into the following categories:
- Capacity Building (48%)
- Research and Education (35.6%)
- Advocacy (6%)
- Lobbying (0.4%)
As these numbers demonstrate, you can be confident that a donation to the Alliance is well spent. For an independent review of work you can also visit Charity Navigator and the American Institute of Philanthropy; both nonprofit watch dogs who have given the Alliance their highest rating score.
With all the worthwhile causes to support this year, I would like to offer five compelling reasons why a donation to the National Alliance to End Homelessness is a smart and meaningful charitable investment.
- We know what works to end homelessness.
By focusing on proven strategies such as prevention and rapid re-housing, we can end homelessness.
- We need your help to prevent increases in homelessness.
Poverty and unemployment rates are at an all-time high and with those come increased risks of homelessness. The Alliance estimates that in the next three years homelessness in the United States could increase by 5 percent, or 74,000 people.
- We have a proven track record.
Prior to the recession, homelessness was decreasing. From 2005 – 2009, chronic homelessness declined by 35 percent and overall homelessness declined by 15 percent. Unfortunately, the impact of the recession sidelined our progress. With your support, we can get back on track, reducing homelessness nationwide.
- We’ve earned the trust and respect of nonprofit watchdogs.
Our commitment to transparency and efficiency has earned the Alliance high honors: a four-star rating from Charity Navigator and an A+ rating from the American Institute of Philanthropy.
- We are good stewards of your gift.
The Alliance works hard to ensure that your donation goes directly to help end homelessness. Last year, 90 percent of all contributions supported our programs to prevent and end homelessness in the United States.
For these and many other reasons, donate today to end homelessness.
Today’s blog post comes to us from one of the Alliance’s board members, Robert D. Stillman.
Robert D. Stillman is president of a consulting company, Milbridge Capital Management, LLC. He is the former Chairman of The Global Fund for Children, current Chairman of the Executive Committee of Small Enterprise Assistance Funds, and he is on the Advisory Board of Jubilee Jobs, Inc. Mr. Stillman joined the Alliance’s board in 2000 and has been a tireless advocate for ending homelessness ever since. In the brief interview below, he shares his experiences as an advocate, Alliance volunteer, and donor.
How did you become involved with the Alliance and efforts to end homelessness?
I came of age at the end of World War II, when times were good, and to most of us, homelessness was confined to a few persons “down on their luck.” Over the years, however, there was increasing evidence of a widespread problem – people sleeping on church steps or over heating grates or in cardboard shelters. Currently, there are around 650,000 homeless people in America on any given night and over the course of the year nearly 1.6 million will experience homelessness – in the greatest and richest country in the world!
When I came to DC in the 1990s, a friend invited me to attend the Annual Awards Ceremony of the National Alliance to End Homelessness. The honorees ranged from Ben Cohen of Ben & Jerry’s to Senator Kit Bond from Missouri – a wide spectrum of political and cultural persuasions, united in their concern about the problem of homelessness and all focused on ways to end it. It was clear that all had great respect for the work of the Alliance. The Ten Year Plan developed by the Alliance was described by Nan Roman, who described the commitment of major U.S. cities to follow this effort in their communities, and its impact was confirmed by representatives from the public sector, non-profits, and individuals. Here was an organization intent on doing something to end this blight!
I came away so moved by the potential and passion of the Alliance that I made my first significant contribution, and later was invited to join the Board.
Do you think ending homelessness is possible? Why?
Yes, I believe that homelessness can be ended. For several years prior to the current recession, rates of homelessness were dropping throughout the country, and supportive housing and other facilities were meeting the needs of more of the chronic homeless population. The commitments of federal, state, and local governments to the Ten Year Plan advocated by the Alliance have put a spotlight on this problem and continuing pressure toward its elimination. Homelessness has increased in the current economy but even with tighter budgets, allocations to these programs have not been significantly reduced. Once the economy strengthens, there is every reason to believe the homeless statistics will resume their downward trend.
Why do you financially support the National Alliance to End Homelessness?
I contribute to the Alliance because it is an efficient and effective way to impact the problem of homelessness. An individual homeless person may not know of the Alliance, but his or her opportunities for regaining a home and renewing a normal life is directly affected by its work. Public and private institutions rely on the Alliance for information, recommendations, inspiration, and passion to end homelessness for all. Through its influence on federal, state and local governments, the Alliance is a major force in targeting resources in this area, encouraging policies that have the greatest chance for success at the most reasonable cost.
If you could tell donors one thing about the Alliance what would it be?
I would tell donors that a contribution to the Alliance will have a greater impact on reducing and ending homelessness than any other place they might put their money. The work of the Alliance is magnified a hundred-fold by the agencies that look to it for guidance. Its reputation for nonpartisan, knowledgeable, honest, and thoughtful recommendations guarantees it will be heard by those in a position to allocate resources to achieve the goal of ending homelessness forever.
Last Friday, the Alliance gathered together to review the impact of our work in 2011. Our conversations about the year [not surprisingly] included discussions about the economy, increased poverty, and budget cuts. And yet, despite these challenges in 2011, progress was still made. I would like to take a moment to share with you – our partners, our supporters and fellow advocates – what we felt were our most impactful achievements.
HEARTH Clinics. To help communities prepare for the changes in the HEARTH Act, the Center for Capacity Building developed the HEARTH Implementation Clinic. These clinics bring together key leaders and stakeholders to assess community performance on key HEARTH performance measures, create an action plan to implement cost-effective strategies to help reduce homelessness and better meet the goals of the HEARTH Act. In 2011, the Alliance conducted 15 HEARTH Clinics in communities such as Alameda County, CA; Houston, TX; and Lancaster, PA.
Timely and Responsive Research Documents. The Homelessness Research Institute responded to need for relevant data and research analyzing the current economic climate’s effects on homelessness through documents such as State of Homelessness in America, the Economy Bytes Series and Increases in Homelessness on the Horizon.
Increased funding in FY2011. Despite budget pressures, federal homelessness funding was not reduced for Fiscal Year 2011. Due to the hard work of the Alliance and our field of grassroots advocates who educated Congress about the need for and the effectiveness of homeless assistance programs, funding for HUD homeless assistance was increased by $40 million — making it one of only two HUD program that will be able to serve more people this year.
But the work isn’t over. There is much more to be done to end homelessness in America.
In 2012, the Alliance policy team will focus on demonstrating the effects of budget cuts on programs that serve vulnerable individuals and stressing the importance of homeless assistance programs to our most economically vulnerable friends and neighbors. Our capacity building team will continue their on-the-ground work helping local communities assess and improve their prevention and rapid re-housing strategies and our research and education team will stay at the forefront of print and social media discussions making the case for housing solutions by presenting evidence-based research and data.
But we can’t do it alone – we need your support. With your help, and working together, we can our important work of ending homelessness in the United States. Working together, we can make an impact in the lives of people in need.
Donate today to support these important efforts.
In this frenzied time of holiday shopping and pressure to find the perfect gift, I would like to offer an alternative gift that will benefit efforts to prevent and end homelessness– an “End Homelessness” t-shirt. These shirts are perfect for co-workers, advocates, and supporters of the movement to end homelessness.
The Alliance is currently selling navy blue “End Homelessness” t-shirts for $15. The shirts are available in men’s and women’s sizes, small through xxxx-large. Payments can be made using a check or credit card. Please visit our t-shirt website for further details and to view our current inventory of sizes.
But what if you could do all of your holiday shopping without driving in traffic, circling for a parking spot, or navigating crowded stores? I would like to offer you a meaningful and high impact alternative to the Black Friday shopping frenzy: a gift to end homelessness.
You can make a gift to end homelessness without waiting in line or struggling through traffic. Today, you can give your loved ones a meaningful gift by donating to the National Alliance to End Homelessness in their honor.
The Alliance will send the individual/s honored by your gift a personalized holiday card (pictured above) notifying them of your contribution. The card reads:
May the wonders of the holiday season fill your heart with peace and your home with joy.
In the spirit of the holiday season a gift in your name has been made to the National Alliance to End Homelessness. This gift was made by___________.
This Black Friday, choose a gift that helps prevent and end homelessness. (Be sure to check the box marked “holiday card” and include the recipient’s address so that we can send them their card.) Your gift to the Alliance will celebrate the spirit of the holidays and contribute to proven solutions that will bring about an end to homelessness in America.
Thank you for your support. We wish you a happy Thanksgiving and wonderful weekend!
That is the question that seems to circulate everywhere as Thanksgiving approaches: on social networks, television ads, blogs, and in conversation. As I sat down to answer this question for this week’s blog, , many things came to mind.
The short answer is, “The Alliance has a lot to be thankful for.”
In the face of stubbornly high unemployment and the continued impact of the recession, the community of people working to end homelessness showed unyielding resilience. Despite waning state and local assistance, rising need among vulnerable families, and challenges created by the lackluster economy, our community has demonstrated its willingness to capitalize on new opportunities, use the best possible practices to prevent and end homelessness, and serve people who have been hit hardest and whose unmet needs are most severe.
That is why I would like to take this opportunity to say: thank you.
Thank you to the local direct service providers who are on the front lines, helping people at risk of and experiencing homelessness, creating innovative new ways to meet increasing demand with decreasing resources.
Thank you to our grassroots advocates who write to Members of Congress, make phone calls to your networks, and conduct Hill visits to ensure that the most vulnerable among us do not bear the brunt of federal budget cuts and partisan politics.
Thank you to our generous donors. We are honored by your commitment to ending homelessness. Your financial support allows the work of the Alliance to continue.
Thank you to our wonderful volunteers; from our board leadership to our conference volunteers who willingly give their time to assist the Alliance.
And lastly, thank you members of the Alliance networks. Your participation in our newsletters, blogs and social networks helps inform our work and spread the message that ending homelessness is possible.