"It's amazing the effort of one individual to make a difference. This group is made up of amazing people," said Cissy Nickel, Community Integration Director, Hunters Woods at Trails Edge.
The senior living community, Hunters Woods at Trails Edge set to open spring 2019, held its first fundraiser on Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018, for Fellowship Square, home to older adults and those with disabilities living on minimal incomes and resources. The purpose of the event was to raise funds and awareness.
Nickel said that Hunters Woods at Trails Edge community knew early on there was an underserved senior population in the local community that they would not be able to assist directly. So, they contacted Fellowship Square and began collaborating to assist the underserved populations. Nickel said that while the cost of housing for individuals at Fellowship House is subsidized, for some there is little left and the holidays are a time for giving to those less fortunate.
Carl Jenkins, President of Fellowship Square Foundation (FSF) Board of Directors, spoke at the evening fundraising. “I know you are opening your hearts and your wallets,” Jenkins said to attendees. He explained that although the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development subsidizes rent payments for residents at the Fellowship Houses, FSF tries to assist with other things such as residents' medical services, food and items not covered by supporting services.
Christy Zeitz, Executive Director, Fellowship Square Foundation said, "This is our first spirit of giving event; its purpose is to raise awareness.” Zeitz described two recent Fellowships projects. "Currently we are undertaking a $70 million new development project of 240 units of our Lake Anne Fellowship House. We are also renovating our Hunters Woods Fellowship House with a $10 million investment space."
"We are spending money like it's water, and we need some," Jenkins told the crowd of attendees. "Actions speak louder than words."
"This is a marvelous event for so many people to come out to help low-income people have dignity in their lives. They have so very little; for some, it's only $700 a month," said Jorn Dalboa, President Hunters Woods Fellowship House Board of Directors in an interview.
On Monday, Dec. 10, Nickel reported that the first fundraiser for Fellowship Square raised $5,000. What’s even more exciting though, Nickel wrote in an email "is that it raised awareness about the Fellowship Square mission which will have benefits for underprivileged seniors that will be far reaching.”