Despite the challenges of COVID-19, Hunger Hike 2020 was a tremendous success — concluding with a remote event this past Sunday (September 20) — the “Livestream.” It featured the traditional Zumba Warm Up from Studio b Dance & Fitness, the National Anthem sung by Julia Sibley, and a benediction by Bishop Timothy Doherty. It also featured remarks from local dignitaries Mayors John Dennis & Tony Roswarski, Council members Lisa Dullum & Kathy Parker. Hunger Hike co-chairs, Purdue Coaches Sharon Versyp and David Kucik, and their teams made an appearance. The Livestream also offered entertainment from One Size Fits All comedy improv group and magician, Scott Starkey, the Wizard of the Wabash.
For decades, Hunger Hike has raised awareness for issues of malnutrition, food insecurity & hunger — and raised funds in excess of $2 million to support food & nutrition programs locally, regionally & globally. Thanks to YOU, the participants & sponsors, for supporting Hunger Hike this historic year. And YES! You still may donate to Hunger Hike, a Hunger Hike Team, or a “Hiker.” To donate by text, text HHIKE to 41444.
Do you remember where you were on the night of Monday, March 23, when “Stay Home, Stay Safe” was ordered for the State of Indiana?
I was home, safe and warm, playing board games with my wife and kids. Logan Smith (not his real name) was lining up in the frigid 37 degree temperatures to get inside the LUM Emergency Shelter. For Logan and many other people in Tippecanoe County who had no place to call home, “Stay Home, Stay Safe” was frighteningly unrealistic.
How does one stay home and safe with no place to call home?
How does one regularly wash one’s hands without access to a sink?
How does one wear a mask when one doesn’t have one?
LUM was there for Logan on March 23 — and every night since, providing a place to temporarily call home and stay safe. LUM understood that the risk of COVID-19 to the homeless population was not just a health concern for individuals experiencing homelessness themselves but, due to the highly contagious nature of coronavirus, a risk to broader public health as well.
I am grateful that Logan had somewhere to go on March 23 to stay safe from the cold, and stay safe from coronavirus. There are brighter days ahead for Logan and for all of us. We may have several more months of difficulty before we get there. God will give Logan and all of us strength to persevere.
Please, will you make a generous financial gift to the Lafayette Urban Ministry Emergency Shelter, so that we can continue to offer people like Logan a warm, safe and caring place to shelter in these pandemic times?