Nine campus organizations ranging from Alpha Phi Omega to Students of Georgetown, Inc. will sponsor the 2013 Georgetown Walk for the Homeless this Sunday in Red Square.
All of the walk’s proceeds will benefit the Georgetown Ministry Center, which uses street outreach and community education to help guide homeless individuals to stable living situations.
“The Help the Homeless walk is one of our biggest fundraisers, and it is vital for us because we receive little government funding,” GMC Outreach Director Roy Witherspoon said. “We rely mostly on corporate sponsors, individual donations and events like this to keep our doors open seven days a week, 365 days a year.”
GMC operates centers serving the homeless in Georgetown and Foggy Bottom, where guests can shower, do laundry, talk to a case manager, see a general practitioner and psychiatrist, use the computer, obtain new clothes and participate in educational programming.
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s Help the Homeless program, which has raised over $100 million for homeless men, women and children since 1988, is bringing the walk to campus. The nonprofit group’s goal is to provide shelter for the nearly 12,000 homeless in the Washington, D.C. area by raising funds for local organizations and spreading awareness. The Center for Social Justice, Research, Teaching and Service and Georgetown Business Improvement District have also helped organize the event.
Participants, whose $20 registration directly benefits GMC, will choose between a two kilometer walk or a five kilometer run through the Georgetown campus and surrounding neighborhood. The event will kick off in Red Square at 11 a.m. with registration, a blessing and a keynote speech. After the run and walk, there will be a celebratory barbecue and prizes for the fastest male and female runners.
Hoyas Outreach Programs and Education President Philip Sidoti (MSB ’14) said that the support from Georgetown community groups helps increase the event’s impact for the local homeless community.
“H.O.P.E. has been involved in the Help the Homeless Walk for several years now, and we are proud to now have the walk taking place on campus for a second consecutive year. The help that we have received from student groups has been incredible,” he said. “Our work with GMC representatives has gone very well. We are looking forward to seeing a lot of Georgetown students participate on Sunday.”
Among the student groups directly helping with the walk are the Georgetown University Grilling Society, which will be doing the barbecue, and WGTB, which will be MCing the event.
Students have expressed excitement about participating in the event.
“The Graduate Student Organization sent out an email with information about the walk/run, and it seemed like a small way to do something positive in support of helping others,” runner Julianna Carney (GRD ’16) said.