Home Sweet Home… MCCH Gala 2015.

At different stages in our life we have many goals and dreams we desperately hope to make a reality. For many, there comes a time when the idea of living in our “dream home” takes a forefront. Wishes of a house with lots of rooms, a big backyard, a safe neighborhood, and maybe even a pool cloud our every thought. For those fortunate enough to have a home, there is this sense of belonging and accomplishment. Unfortunately, there is a multitude of homeless citizens in many parts of our nation that are longing for a place to call home. We need to ask ourselves… How can we help reduce the amount of homeless individuals on our streets?

For starters, here in Bethesda Maryland, the Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless is taking a stand and aiding in providing housing to those living on the streets. Their mission:

“Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless (MCCH) provides solutions to end homelessness in Montgomery County. Our vision is to build a community where everyone has a safe, stable, and affordable place to call home.”

By offering temporary shelter, support for “stable housing”, and working to create more affordable homes, the MCCH hopes to eventually eradicate homelessness in the area. Furthermore, they help find housing for veterans who have served but return home and find they don’t have anywhere to live. I had the privilege, first hand, to see what a great organization this is, when I attended the MCCH “Home Is Where The Heart Is: 25th Anniversary Gala.” It was a successful night that created awareness for the homeless and honored members of the organization. Congressman John Delaney received the Distinguished Service Award, Samaritans4Homless received the Distinguished Partner Award, and Laura Cecala was given the Distinguished Volunteer Award. These and many other individuals make up a determined team that is fighting for the homeless in our community. Yvette Johnson, another important figure, is one of the volunteers who received an award for her efforts in compiling donations for the silent auction. We met when she visited my store, The Art of Shaving, and discussed what we could offer for the auction. I was instantly blown away by her dedication and what MCCH does for the community. In her own words, I remember her stating, “I volunteer because I believe in the cause and I feel so strongly about the good we can do together.”  Something that resonated and inspired me to support this organization.

Another great event coming up for MCCH is the “KaBoom! Playground Build” on Wednesday May 20, 2015! Volunteers can sign up to build a playground for the children in the community of the Seneca Heights housing program. This is a great way to give back and really get a front row view of the good MCCH does! For more details check out: http://www.mcch.net/events/kaboomplayground.html.

MCCH Gala 2015

Now, whether your a member of Montgomery County or your miles away, this is an issue that blankets many parts of our world. My challenge to you readers… if your in the Bethesda or D.C. area take a minute and learn more about MCCH at http://www.mcch.net. For my readers in other states, hop on your computer and search for organizations like this in your area and see what volunteer options are offered. There are so many events that you can volunteer to be a part of and it doesn’t take much. We can only encourage change one person at a time and if we come together for a common goal, there is no stopping what we can accomplish.

Volunteer Honoree Yvette Johnson and myself.
Volunteer Honoree Yvette Johnson and myself.

1 Comment

  1. Joel, what a fantastic honor to have you as a guest to see firsthand the importance of the services that MCCH provide to the hungry and homeless men including veterans, women and children. I thoroughly enjoyed reading your perspective of what is a reality to many. With people like you, who share the sentiments of MCCH’s mission, together hopefully we can bring more awareness to homelessness, not just to Montgomery County, but in neighboring counties and worldwide. Through this awesome blog, hopefully we can educate and get people to assist in combatting homelessness through knowledge gained from this fantastic piece you composed. Joel, thank you for sharing your experience at the gala, and for recognition of me and others who are turning a dream into a reality for many who are homeless. They have hope through us, who have a vision, mission, and a goal to bring awareness and favorable results through public donations and sponsors to combat this devastating condition. Joel, kudos to you on a really great piece!


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