Homeless man

Housing Visions: A Continuum of Care

A week of special activities designed to draw attention to the issue of Hunger and Homelessness in Catawba County will begin Sunday, Nov. 16, and end Saturday, Nov. 22.

The public is invited to attend any of these events. The activities are free, but donations to benefit local persons experiencing homelessness will be accepted. Suggested donations include hats, coats, gloves, socks, backpacks, flashlights, batteries, sleeping bags and tents. Monetary donations may be made by writing a check to Catawba County United Way and writing "Housing Visions" in the memo line.

On Sunday morning, Nov. 16, participants are invited to gather for a worship service on the Square in Hickory beginning with breakfast at 7:30 a.m., followed by the service beginning at 8:30 a.m. This service is held weekly by Our Father's Pavilion for persons who are homeless.

On Monday, Nov. 17, the documentary film "Homeless in America" will be shown at the Belk Centrum on the Lenoir-Rhyne University campus at 6:30-8 p.m. This film provides an in-depth, first-hand look into what it means to be homeless in the land of opportunity and freedom.

On Tuesday, Nov. 18, the Hickory Soup Kitchen will open its doors to the public to participate in a bingo game with persons who are homeless.

On Wednesday, an Oxfam America Hunger Banquet will be held at 6:30-8 p.m. at the Bear's Lair Atrium on the Lenoir-Rhyne University campus. Participants in this experience will receive different meals and seats depending on the luck of the draw. The night's event challenges assumptions about poverty, hunger and injustice and is sure to be memorable. Pre-registration is required for this free event, and seating is limited. Register at http://student.lr.edu/community-service/hunger-banquet/registration. For more information about this event, call 828-328-7025.

On Thursday, Nov. 20, there will be a panel discussion and forum on "The Younger Faces of Homelessness" from noon to 2 p.m. at the Tarlton Complex on the Catawba Valley Community College campus. Lunch will be provided.

On Saturday, Nov. 22, "In Their Shoes," a walk and cookout, will be held. Beginning with a walk at 10 a.m., the event will end with lunch at Grace House at 11:30 a.m. Participants will park at the Salvation Army and walk to Greater Hickory Cooperative Christian Ministries, then to the Hickory Soup Kitchen, and conclude at Grace House Day Shelter. Vans will be provided for those unable to make the walk, but who are interested in the experience.

• 2014 iCare Tour video


"CVCC's CRU group put on a 5k on April 12, 2014 to raise awareness about homelessness and raise money to support the Housing Visions efforts to battle homelessness. On June 16,2014, Amanda Crouse and Staci Wilson represented the group and presented Housing Visions with a check for $2200.00 the group raised. Many thanks to CVCC's CRU group for choosing Housing Visions to be the recipient of its annual charity run. Also many thanks to all of those that participated in the 5k and the businesses and groups that generously sponsored the event. For more information about CVCC's CRU group, visit http://www.cvcc.edu/Resources/CRU/index.cfm "

• Photos of the event

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Housing Visions is a consortium of many human service agencies that deal with issues of poverty and homelessness. Additional information about the organization is available on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Housing-Visions-Continuum-of-Care/157004407655316.

Housing Visions partners include the following: the homeless community, A Caring Alternative, ALFA, Catawba County United Way, Catawba Valley Behavioral Healthcare, The Corner Table, Catawba Valley Community College, Catawba County Social Services, Eastern Catawba Cooperative Christian Ministries, Exodus Homes/Exodus Works, Family Guidance Center, Grace House, Greater Hickory Cooperative Christian Ministries, Hickory Police Department, Hickory Soup Kitchen, Homeless Veterans’ Program, Partners Behavioral Health Management, Our Father’s Pavilion, Safe Harbor Rescue Mission, Salvation Army, Sipe’s Orchard Home, The Shepherd’s Heart.