February 12th is the date for the 12th Homelessness Marathon. This is not the kind of Marathon you might think of at first. No one has been in training to do long distance running for this event. The event in question is an annual 14-hour radio broadcast featuring the voices and stories of homeless people from around the United States via a national toll free phone number..
This year the program will originate from Pass Christian, MS. It is next door to Waveland, MS which is the Corps of Engineers officially designated "ground zero" for Hurricane Katrina's Landfall. Pass Christian lost nearly 80% of it's housing, all of its public buildings, and most of its businesses to Katrina.
The Homelessness Marathon will air on more than 100 radio stations coast-to-coast and will be televised by Free Speech Television, which has a channel on the Dish Network and online. It will be available free to radio stations over the Public Radio Satellite System and the Pacifica Satellite. There is a list of radio stations that will be airing the program on the website. Please encourage people you know to listen to these stories, especially those who may not otherwise have reason to care. Host a potluck and make this the entertainment. Make it a fundraiser if you want to support a local homeless assistance project.
Why? Perhaps the most frightening thing I read was in a press release about the event...."One gentleman told me that what happened after Katrina is a 'premonition' of what will happen to the rest of the country after the current economic tsunami rolls through," comments Jeremy Weir Alderson, the Homelessness Marathon's founder. "America should pay attention, and we're going to do our best to bring the nation this story." THAT'S WHY. I really hope he is mistaken. I KNOW we have the collective power to prevent it.