In the past year, our community lost 15 homeless men and women. Micah Ecumenical Ministries will honor them on Dec. 21, which is Homeless Persons Memorial Day.
"With no funeral or family to grieve, it is up to all of us to honor their lives as a community," the event's invitation reads.
We know that homelessness and mental illness are connected. One in five homeless people in America have a serious mental illness. That's why we are so proud to partner with Micah to help local men and women who struggle with mental illness and homelessness.
Our Projects of Assistance in the Transition from Homelessness program helps individuals find appropriate mental health treatment, connects them with resources, and assists in hunting for affordable housing.
At any given time, our PATH case manager is working with 80-90 individuals who are homeless and who have a serious mental illness or a substance use disorder. Partnering with Micah, PATH has helped to reduce chronic homelessness by 84 percent. Micah has a goal of eradicating chronic homelessness in the Fredericksburg area, and we are happy to be partners in that effort.
We invite you to join us as we attend the Homeless Persons Memorial Service. It will be held on Dec. 21, which is the first night of winter and the longest night of the year. The event will begin outside at Market Square, to stand in solidary for those who have died in the cold.
A reception will follow in the Micah Cafe, in the basement of Fredericksburg Baptist Church, 1019 Princess Anne Street in Fredericksburg. The cafe is on the Caroline Street entrance of the church.
This event is hosted by Fredericksburg Interfaith Leaders along with Micah Ecumenical Ministries. Downtown shops and restaurants will sponsor the reception.