On any given night, roughly 760 people are affected by homelessness in the Fargo-Moorhead area. Homelessness knows no discrimination. People young and old, black and white, married or single can be struck down by homelessness. They face challenges that very few of us can imagine.
Being homeless and hungry is not a switch that can be turned off and on. It takes work to get out of a slump and often help is needed.
“Just showing that there is someone that cares about them can make someone’s day that much better,” says Stephon Schaller, an officer of the Student Social Work Organization at NDSU.
Nov. 14-22 is Homelessness and Hunger Awareness week across the country. A sponsor of some of the events is NDSU’s Student Social Work Organization. The organization is relatively new and welcomes everyone from all different majors. SSWO meets every other Wednesday at 7 p.m. in the E. Morrow Lebedeff Hall.
Because it is so new, the hardest challenge SSWO faces is finding new members. The organization focuses on volunteering year-round, helping out those in need. Its mission is to promote unity in the community. SSWO welcomes all to attend guest speakers, panels and conferences as well as partake in this week’s awareness events.
Monday – Wear Purple
Purple is the color of homelessness awareness. Across the country, people will be wearing purple to show their support in honor of National Homelessness Awareness week.
Wednesday – Wear orange, Serve with the Herd
The official color of hunger awareness is orange. Wear this color and sign up for Serve with the Herd, an event put on by the Volunteer Network, a separate organization located in the Memorial Union’s Student Activities Office. Serve with the Herd is a program that schedules time slots to sign up for a chance to volunteer. You will be sent out to different shelters and places to volunteer in the area.
Thursday – Homeless for a Day
Homeless for a Day is when students stand outside from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. to raise money for local homeless shelters. They will be outside of the Loaf ‘N Jug on the corner of University Drive and 12th Avenue. Not only will the students be raising money, but also awareness on what homeless individuals endure when the temperatures drop.
Friday – Bake sale
The bake sale will be in the Union from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The proceeds will go to the Fargo-Moorhead Coalition for the Homeless.