We are preparing now for our annual Winter Boot Party, 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 8 at Christ Church Cathedral. Many thanks to The North Central Region of The Episcopal Church in CT and Christ Church Cathedral for hosting our party. To volunteer for our life-changing event, email us at email@example.com. We welcome volunteers 17 years of age and older.
The need among the homeless for decent footwear and medical foot exams is year-round. Working with our partner, Officer Jimmy Barrett (left), we continue to give new socks (Yay, Bombas) and great shoes (Thanks, FleetFeet and community donors) to our homeless clients.
Through word-of-mouth in the homeless community, many clients find their way to Officer Barrett’s station at Hartford City Hall. There they receive new shoes, socks, and most of all, support, delivered Officer Barrett-style: a no-nonsense approach, baked in by years in the military and leavened with compassion and a belief in second chances.
One of our goals is to provide shoes that help our homeless and unstably housed clients find work.
For Rawanda B. (right), a veteran of area shelters, a pair of no-slip, black kitchen shoes helped her secure a job as a dishwasher in a Hartford restaurant where she is also training to be a line cook. “I have no income,” she says, explaining how difficult it would have been to buy the shoes required for the job. “I am grateful for anything.”
To help, you may donate through the CPMA Foundation here
Despite a snowstorm, 300 homeless people attended our Winter Boot Party at Hartford City Hall on Dec. 9. They lined up early for new boots, socks, personal care items and more at a series of care stations. First stop? Hospitality, for a cup of Dunkin’s and healthy cereal bar, courtesy of DD’s and Whole Foods.
Then onto Medical where our volunteer doctors gave much needed foot exams and a dose of compassion.
Since so many people tend to turn away from homeless people, we offered a therapeutic touch station.There nurses from Hartford Healthcare and staff from the Episcopal Church in CT (North Central Region) supplied foot massages and gentle conversation. (It was a big hit with everyone.)
Next stop: new boots and socks. (hugs to Fleet Feet and Bombas)
Followed by new underwear from Church Army USA along with scarves and gift cards from friend Toni Sullivan, once homeless herself, now a paralegal in Manchester.
A delish lunch to go was donated by Zest 280, Max Bibo’s, Community Renewal Team, and Carol Dupuis and Mike Haylon.
Many volunteers helped that day and in the weeks before, collecting new and quality used boots (and cleaning them, too). Special shout-out to the recruits at Hartford PoliceAcademy for whom no task was too humble or demanding and to artist Jacque Metheny for designing our multiple flyers and posters.
Since the Boot Party, our work continues–especially with the recent deep freeze. To date, we have helped more than 100 additional homeless people. We will continue to help, thanks to our big-hearted supporters.
They include: Aetna, Balega Socks, Bombas, Church Army USA, Community Renewal Team, Dunkin’ Donuts, Episcopal Church in CT, (North Central Region) Hartford Bags of Love, Hartford County Bar Association Foundation, Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, Hartford HealthCare, Hartford Yard Goats, Insane Irving’s,Max Bibo’s, Robinson + Cole, St. Francis Hospital, St. Timothy Church, Starbucks, Trinity College Students, U Conn Hartford, Whole Foods, Zest 280.
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