Murthy Law Firm founder and president, Sheela Murthy, co-hosted a luncheon at the Center Club on January 29th to kick off this year’s fundraising effort for the Journey Home, a joint initiative of the City of Baltimore and the United Way of Central Maryland, which are working together to make homelessness rare and brief. Ms. Murthy was tapped to co-chair this year’s annual fundraising event, proceeds of which will help to implement the Journey Home’s ten-year plan to end homelessness in Baltimore by 2018. How serious is the homelessness problem, here in Baltimore? According to Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake:
“On any given night in Baltimore City, there are at least 4,000 people experiencing homelessness, and nearly 500 are families with children. And of the children staying in our city’s shelters, about 80 percent are under age eleven.” [See Welcome: A Message from Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.]
Each year, homelessness costs Baltimore taxpayers millions of dollars for temporary shelter and emergency services – quick fixes that don’t chip away at the underlying causes of homelessness. The Journey Home aims to cut both the public costs and the staggering human toll of homelessness by creating long-term solutions.
“Housing First” is a key element of this plan; it means placing homeless people into appropriate housing as quickly as possible, to resolve the immediate housing crisis and enable clients take fuller advantage of other available services. It means expanding the range of services for the homeless, and better coordinating existing services.
Here’s the rub: federal and state funding only goes so far. To build the services and infrastructure needed to help Baltimore’s homeless population over the long term, the Journey Home must raise additional funds from foundations and nonprofits, as well as corporate and individual donors.
Here Sheela Murthy can help. As a recognized leader in Baltimore’s business community – and a committed philanthropist who has set a new benchmark for corporate social responsibility – Murthy can draw on an extensive network of contacts to drum up support for this important project. She is accustomed to her role as a change agent, to spearheading systemic improvements like the ones put forth in the ten-year plan of the Journey Home.
The Journey Home will hold its annual fundraiser on Saturday, October 19, 2013; more details to follow. Further information on this outstanding organization is available online.
Copyright © 2013, SHEELA MURTHY. All Rights Reserved