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September 30
1955 - Actor James Dean, 24, drives through Castaic Junction en route to his final resting place [watch]
James Dean


Commentary by Laurie Ender
| Wednesday, Aug 14, 2013

Laurie EnderThe William S. Hart Union High School District reported in 2009 that there were more than 850 homeless students enrolled our local junior and senior high schools. That’s 850 children, not counting elementary and preschool-aged children. That information stopped many of us in our tracks and was the motivation for creating a local nonprofit organization called Family Promise of Santa Clarita Valley.

Who are these children? They attend our schools, play with our kids on soccer teams, participate in youth groups and Scout troops. But at night they sleep in their cars, or on the floors and couches of friends or relatives, or in local motels until their money runs out. It’s no surprise that national statistics show homeless children perform significantly worse on measures of academic achievement and face an array of health issues and often have developmental delays.

Family Promise of SCV is dedicated to helping our homeless families and we have provided food, shelter and support for 100 local children since opening our doors just over two years ago. Through the incredible support of our community – businesses, families, places of worship – we are able to give our homeless families meals, a place to stay, assistance in resume writing, job search and financial planning. Our goal is to help each family we work with achieve independence and success and get back on their feet again.

boxcityOn Sept. 28, 2013 we will hold our 4th Annual SCV Box City event at Bridgeport Park. Everyone is invited to bring a cardboard box or two and a sleeping bag and spend the night in the park to replicate what it might be like if a cardboard box was the only place you had to call home. Participants (our Box City “residents”) are asked to get donations from family and friends, all tax-deductible contributions, which allow Family Promise of SCV to continue the vital work we are doing in our community. We will provide a brown paper bag dinner, live music, prizes and a light breakfast in the morning. Last year we had nearly 400 Box City participants and this year, we hope to increase that number. Bring your family, scout group, your baseball team or your congregation youth group and join us for a wonderful night.

If you’d like to join us for Box City or find out more information about Family Promise, please visit our website at www.FamilyPromiseSCV.org. We frequently need donated items like shampoo, diapers and toothpaste and welcome volunteers to assist at our Resource Center. Please help us end homelessness in our community, one family at a time … because every child deserves a home.

 

Laurie Ender is the 2013-14 president of Family Promise SCV.

 

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