Monday, September 14, 2020
Support HomeStart's 2020 Runners!
I am delighted to be part of the HomeStart 2020 Boston Marathon® team. It will be my 2nd Boston Marathon and 6th marathon overall. I am passionate about what HomeStart stands for, as my wife Sara and I have focused on homelessness in our charitable giving since we moved to Boston in 2016.
It was Matt Pritchard, HomeStart’s president, who showed me how possible it is for us to make a real difference in people's lives, preventing homelessness for as little as $2,000 per eviction prevented. Two years ago, I spent a morning in eviction court with him and one of his colleagues and saw HomeStart’s Eviction Prevention program in action.
One particular example will stay with me the rest of my life. A single mother of two teenage kids had lived in the same apartment for 14 years and was now threatened with eviction. She was working a full-time customer service job for minimum wage. She tried to pick up some extra hours when she could. Still, half of her $2,000 monthly income went towards her rent, leaving less than $1,000 for all of her other living expenses, including feeding herself and her kids. She had fallen behind by less than 2 months of rent due to some unexpected costs and was now being taken to court by her landlord to be evicted. Sitting in the courthouse you could see someone who was trying to do everything right by her family, and still seeing the bottom drop out of it all.
HomeStart intervened that day and was able to help her avoid eviction, saving her and her kids from having to experience life on the streets and from being pushed further into cycles of poverty.
Many people are one emergency away from not being able to make rent and without HomeStart more families would be on Boston's streets today.
I am excited to run the 2020 Boston Marathon in support of HomeStart, an innovative nonprofit with a mission to end and prevent homelessness in the Greater Boston area. This will be my fourth Boston Marathon and my tenth marathon overall.
HomeStart holds a special place in my heart; my sister, Mary O’Toole Mahoney, serves as Board Chair for this nonprofit. I am incredibly proud of Mary and inspired by the work she and her colleagues have done for the Greater Boston community at HomeStart.
To date, HomeStart has permanently housed more than 12,000 people out of homelessness and prevented more than 2,500 households from being put out through eviction- with 95% of those households remaining securely housed even 48 months after the intervention.
Please take the time to watch the above video and see the incredible impact HomeStart has made on people’s lives. The generous employees at HomeStart are correct in saying that a home is a basic right and a basic necessity for every person.
“In order to succeed, in order to be a better person, in order to be as you are, you need a home.”
With your donation, someone who has been living shelter to shelter for years will be able to partner with a Housing Search advocate to finally find and move into a home of their own.
My wife Claire and I will match every dollar raised by those who support this campaign, so please, give until it hurts! Particularly at this time of year it is appropriate to give thanks for the roof over our heads and the warmth of our homes. Let‘s all do something to give those less fortunate that same human dignity.
HomeStart is proud to be an official Partner of John Hancock in the Marathon Non-Profit Program. The Non-Profit Program provides over 1000 Boston Marathon® bibs to select non-profit organizations throughout the community, which provides organizations with a significant fundraising opportunity. Last year, John Hancock Non-Profit Runners raised over $38.7M for their causes.