Every December 21st — the winter solstice — activist across the nations commemorate those who die while experiencing homelessness. A group of artisans have begun work on an art installation that will do more than remind America of these tragic deaths, it will provide blankets to those who are still alive.
Modeled after an action in Carlisle, Pennsylvania in 2021 — this year’s artisans will work with other creative types from across every state and territory in the U.S. “Homelessness is everywhere. It effects every age group and in the United States, it’s completely unnecessary,” explained Homeless Remembrance Blanket Project coordinator, Pat LaMarche. She continued, “I’ve been fighting extreme poverty for decades. I’ve been writing and broadcasting the stories of folks on the street for two thirds of my lifetime. Nothing’s changed, except maybe to get worse. At least with this project I've met hundreds of people who are willing to devote countless hours, sharing their talents to help someone they’ve never met with the simplest of needs — warmth.”
On December 21, 2021, nearly 200 individuals came together to place 3200 square feet of hand made artistry on the ground. The next morning, the giant blanket was disassembled and given to folks in need. This year, the Homeless Remembrance Blanket Project will place a 9000 square foot blanket at the lawn of the U.S. Capitol as individuals in seventeen states have already begun groups to build their portion of the display.
Facebook groups exist for the already established state organizations. To join an established one, volunteers can search fb for Homeless Remembrance Blanket — (state or territory name) — or can reach out to the non-profit sponsors, the Charles Bruce Foundation (CBF) to start a new one. Organizers hope to have every state and territory on line by May the first.
Folks who would like to make a blanket but can not afford the materials should contact CBF and arrangements will be made to assure they have the needed supplies.