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11/16/2012 7:00:00 AM
Walk promotes homelessness awareness
Catholic News Service
Shanty stands outside Detroit.
Catholic News Service
Shanty stands outside Detroit.

Civic and religious leaders are joining members of faith communities on Friday, Nov. 16, for the third annual Day of Homelessness Awareness in Multnomah County. 

The day is observed each year in conjunction with National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, which falls the week before Thanksgiving.  It also comes at a time when temperatures outside are dropping, and emergency shelters are opening for winter.  

Organized by the New City Initiative, a non-profit with a mission to engage faith communities in ending the cycle of homelessness, the day begins with an early morning walk. Participants will meet at First Baptist Church, 909 SW 11th Ave. at 7:30 a.m. 

After opening remarks and an invocation, walkers will embark on an “urban pilgrimage” through downtown Portland, passing important landmarks like faith communities and social service agencies that assist people experiencing homelessness.  The walk ends at First United Methodist Church, 1838 SW Jefferson, where coffee and pastries will be served. 

Following the walk, a forum, “Linking Arms: Affordable Housing and Homelessness in Our Community,” will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Lunch will be provided during the forum, co-sponsored by the city of Portland, Multnomah County, and Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon.

Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon will also sponsor a workshop on economic justice on Saturday, Nov. 17, titled “Envisioning an Ethical Economy: A Participatory Workshop for Students and Young Adults.”  The workshop runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at First Christian Church. For more information, log on to www.emoregon.org.

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