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Downtown fundraising event raises more than $850,000 to help the homeless

Posted by Jeremy C. Fox  May 10, 2013 10:13 AM

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Jack O'Neil, Lauren O'Neil, Joe Hanley, Tom Lorello.jpg

Heading Home

Heading Home Housewarming co-chairs Jack O’Neil of National Development and his daughter Lauren O’Neil of HFF stood alongside Joe Hanley, Heading Home board president and a partner at McDermott, Quilty, & Miller, and Tom Lorello, the homelessness organization’s executive director.

Hundreds of community leaders gathered in Boston’s Financial District recently for a benefit to support Heading Home, a nearly four-decade-old organization that provides financial literacy, job training, and life skills to the homeless.

The Heading Home Housewarming event drew more than 850 attendees to the State Room overlooking downtown Boston and raised more than $850,000 to support the organization, it said in a statement. The total is about $150,000 more than was raised at the 2012 Housewarming event.

“It is inspiring to be a part of the Greater Boston community that has truly stepped up, both for the Housewarming and in the wake of recent tragic events,” said Tom Lorello, executive director of Heading Home, according to the statement.

The May 2 event included food from more than 20 local restaurants and chefs, a live auction, and a personal story from a Heading Home client, a woman who came to the organization as an unemployed young mother and is now living in a permanent home and preparing to become a nurse.

The event’s co-chairwoman, Lauren O’Neil of the mortgage banking firm HFF, said people who have been financially successful should look out for those less fortunate than themselves.

“Many of us are doing well, and it’s important to invest in organizations like Heading Home that are providing solutions for our neighbors who are motivated to get back on track,” she said, according to the statement.

Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at jeremy.fox@globe.com.
Follow him on Twitter: @jeremycfox.
Follow Downtown on Twitter: @YTDowntown.

Crowd Shot at Heading Home Housewarming.jpg

Heading Home

A crowd of hundreds packed the State Room on the 33rd floor at 60 State St., overlooking downtown Boston.

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