Posted by boston.com December 10, 2013 10:00 AM
The following was submitted by the Citizens for Adequate Housing:
The Citizens for Adequate Housing (CAH) homeless family shelters received a generous donation of a new front porch for their administration building from the LAT&O division of GE Lynn. Through their Matching Gift Foundation, GE volunteers raised $5,000 and donated their time and labor to help build and make the porch a reality.
“Having GE LAT&O Division raise the funds and get projects like this accomplished is an amazing corporate contribution to our cause,” says Corey Jackson, Executive Director. “With GE taking care of many projects like this throughout the years, we have been able to channel more of our funds directly to the families in our care.”
GE began their relationship with CAH about 4 years ago, when (now retired) GE employee Bill McKenna connected the shelter with his company as a local volunteer opportunity. McKenna had a passion for helping children, and wanted to get involved. Currently, the 350 volunteers have donated more than 1,000 hours and over $10,000 since the relationship began.
Current GE employee Matt Dias said, “It started small, but has really snowballed. The more participation we get, the more money and time we are able to give to CAH. It has become a project that our employees are passionate about, which is why the relationship is so successful.”
The Inn Between and Inn Transition now house over 20 families and have an additional 5 families in Salem and Lynn. The agency also works with hundreds of families across the North Shore to stabilize their housing situations. The agency has placed a priority on increasing the area’s affordable housing stock with purchases of property for its Inn Homes program. Over the past several years, CAH has secured 18 low-income rental units for families in need. GE has provided much needed financial support and volunteerism that has had a profound impact on all of CAH’s initiatives.
GE employees raise money through grassroots fundraising efforts, including raffles, lunches, events, and soliciting donations. Because CAH is a smaller organization, these efforts on behalf of GE make a huge impact. “It’s great to see how much we can help these families,” says Dias.
Last year, a brand new shed was installed at CAH for storage. For both the shed and the front porch, GE employees not only raised the funds but also donated their labor, as they built both structures themselves. GE employees have also sponsored events at the shelter for the residents, such as an Easter egg hunt, an ice cream social, and an annual Christmas party.