At the beginning of spring semester 2014, four community-minded VI students founded HOME, an outreach group that stands for Helping Organizations Meet Ends. Founding members Chelsea Munday, Melissa Martinez, Katelyn Tucker and Holly Richardson say the purpose of the organization is, as the name implies, to provide an extra layer of support and intermediary assistance to organizations that are already helping the needy through existing programs.
HOME collects monetary donations and clothes, toiletries and other items for Salvation Army, Family Promise Bristol, YMCA and other organizations. Club members also assist with staffing, program support and delivery for these organizations.
The idea came about when Munday, a junior from Bristol, England, stayed on campus during winter break. While spending time at the Bristol Public Library she noticed many homeless people and recognized their need for support. HOME was established as an official VI organization and the first donations of clothing were collected on campus and distributed Jan. 23 through the Salvation Army. In the first month, over 1000 items had been donated to homeless families and the club members began building relationships with other organizations that need intermediary support.
“It has been heartwarming to see these families wearing the clothes that we donated,” said Martinez, a sophomore from Miami. “We believe that one random act of kindness can change the direction of someone’s life and this could be how it starts with a small seed planted.
“We plan to grow the organization with more student involvement on campus and branching out into the community, conducting local drives for collections, selling wrist bands and T-shirts, and hosting a convocation event.” The next drive is our Project 2K – a push to collect 2000 pair of socks – and we hope to engage businesses and the community.
HOME has reached over 4000 donations. A collection box is located in the Athletic Office and donations can be made by contacting club officers on campus or through Facebook or Instagram.
President – Chelsey Munday
Vice-President – Melissa Martinez
Historian – Katelyn Tucker
Treasurer/secretary – Holly Richardson
Facebook page: HOME Helping Organizations Meet Ends