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March 2, 2021
Winter Walk Raises $675K to Aid Nonprofits Helping the Homeless
Winter Walk

February 8, 2021 — Winter Walk, an annual fundraiser to help end homelessness, today announced that this year's event, held yesterday, raised a record-setting $675,000 to help Greater Boston nonprofits prevent, support, and care for those who are homeless, beating its goal by 20%.

Winter Walk, sponsored under the umbrella of Boston Medical Center, attracted 2,000 walkers and raised $315,000 from walkers and $360,000 from sponsors. It had sought to raise $250,000 from walkers and $310,000 from sponsors. Walkers completed a two-mile walk through Boston.

Last year’s walk raised $210,000 from walkers and $210,000 from sponsors, beating a $400,000 goal to set what was then a record amount raised for the event.

Walk week is continuing through Feb. 14, and funds will continue to be raised through month end.

Ari Barbanell, executive director of Winter Walk, said, “This year, our incredible community came together from all over—beyond Boston and Massachusetts—to say that ending homelessness is within our reach.

“Communities were asked to complete their own Winter Walk in their own areas as we shifted to a remote model, and our Winter Walk family took strides together from as far away as Texas, Alaska, the UK, even Korea.”

Barbanell said that to keep people connected with greater outreach, Winter Walk adopted new approaches to share stories about the homeless that included the launch of a podcast series.

Organizations supported by effort are:

  • · Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program
  • · Boston Medical Center
  • · Bridge Over Troubled Waters
  • · Brookview
  • · Common Cathedral
  • · FamilyAid Boston
  • · New England Center for Veterans
  • · Pine Street Inn
  • · St. Francis House
  • · Y2Y Harvard Square

Top sponsors were Boston Medical Center, Boston Medical Center Health Net Plan, The Red Sox Baseball Club, Bombas, CBRE, Citi, Goodwin, Liberty Mutual, Natixis, Wayfair, the Gordon Family Foundation, and the Pucker Family.

Winter Walk launched in 2017, attracting 1,000 walkers. According to the organization, more than 6,000 people are homeless in Boston and include a wide swath of backgrounds – “ children and youth, people with diplomas and degrees, people with jobs and careers, people with families and people without.”

The diversity of homeless people presents a challenge in defining the scope of homelessness, according to Winter Walk, “but the need to address the root causes and provide support is necessary for all facing the possibility or reality of homelessness.”

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