Oregon Interfaith Summit on Homeless Children and Families Set For June 24th
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Oregon faces a grave moral crisis: the exploding number of homeless children in our public schools.Last year Oregon’s public schools served over 18,000 children experiencing homelessness and that number is expected to grow this year.Tragically, we expect less money to serve these students as the stimulus dollars from the federal government expire and as Oregon’s budget crisis worsens.
The fiscal reality of our situation provides evidence that children and their families will suffer greatly but: “It is hope that helps us keep the faith, despite the evidence, knowing that only in doing so has the evidence any chance of changing,” once said William Sloane Coffin.Acting on our faith in such a moment has the power to change the evidence.
This event has been in the planning stages since last fall.Finally, we are calling people of faith from across Oregon to help bring lasting change that provides meaningful opportunities for children who are homeless.We can make a powerful difference.
Speakers and workshop leaders will address the varied causes of childhood, youth and family homelessness; discuss the continuum of solutions; and present best practices for congregational shelters, hospitality networks, family mentoring and food programs. You can network with homeless liaisons for the public schools, non-profit providers, government officials, and other people of faith. We will focus on homeless education programs and build an interfaith advocacy agenda for homeless children, youth and families.
Please share this information with your congregation, interfaith contracts, denominational bodies, and plan on attending yourself. If you have questions you can always contact me directly or Kevin Finney, public policy director for Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon, at 503-221-1054 or email@example.com.
See you in Salem!
Rev. Chuck Currie
PS. Below is a video of the remarks I made in April before the Oregon Coalition on Housing and Homelessness on how the faith community can work with schools and other public agencies to help end homelessness.
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