Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Helping Veterans Close To Home - Pitching In At HBS

My friend, Jon Redmond, reminded me of the following special event happening right now at Harvard Business School:

Harvard Business School Students Experience Life On the Streets in Support of the New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans

WHAT: Fundraiser in support of New England’s homeless veterans.

WHEN: 12 p.m. Tuesday, March 28, 2006 through 2 p.m. Thursday, March 30, 2006.

WHERE: Spangler Lawn on the Harvard Business School Campus

Boston, MA

Members of Harvard Business School’s (HBS) Armed Forces Alumni Association (AFAA) are spending 50 hours this week in a two-person tent to raise money and awareness for the New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans.

On any given night, 275,000 veterans - men and women who served as early as World War II and as late as last year -- are homeless in America. One out of three homeless males has worn a uniform and served our country in the U.S. military. More than two-thirds of homeless vets served for at least three years, and more than a third were stationed in war zones.

The New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans in downtown Boston, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) substance-free facility, is dedicated to creating a one-stop service center to empower veterans to address the issues leading to their homelessness and unemployment.

Federal and statewide budget cuts, increasing energy prices and high levels of homelessness have recently pushed the Shelter to the limits of its capacity. With few reserves and mounting utility bills, the staff is forced to rely on charitable events such as this one to continue providing essential services. “We are grateful to the Armed Forces Alumni Association at Harvard Business School for their community spirit in recognizing the value of America's veterans and raising awareness about the plight of those who are now homeless," said a New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans spokesperson.

“Spending a few days living in a tent outside HBS may seem a bit strange to some people, but compared to the difficulties faced by homeless veterans each day and the massive challenges faced by the New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans in serving them, it’s the least we can do,” said Jon Redmond, a current AFAA member and fundraiser organizer. “There are 25 veterans of Iraq, Afghanistan, or both currently studying at HBS. We were fortunate; when we got home we had great opportunities as we transferred into civilian life. The vets living in the shelter didn’t have the opportunities we did.”

Last year, Harvard’s AFAA raised more than $7,000 for the Shelter by remaining in a tent for several days. The money was used by the shelter for educational programs and occupational retraining at the Shelter, a critical need after Federal budget cuts cost them over $700,000 in grant money. This year, the AFAA has set a goal of $10,000.

The Armed Forces Alumni Association is an independent organization comprised of professional business graduate students, and dedicated to providing information, networking opportunities, and career support activities to its members. The members of the association have either served in or are still active in the armed forces of the United States or foreign countries.

* * * *

I plan to stop by the HBS campus this afternoon to make a donation. If you are local to Boston, I encourage you to do the same. If you are not able to stop by, I am confident that Jon Redmond would be happy to expedite your donation by mail.

Jon Redmond - 857 998-9418 or


No comments: