ATO members combat homelessness for 11th year

Breanna Francis, Reporter

Members of Alpha Tau Omega braved the elements for the 11th year in a row during their “go homeless” fundraising event, aiming to call attention to homelessness while raising money for the Huntington City Mission.

In order to raise awareness and aid the growing homelessness problem in Huntington, members of Alpha Tau Omega gathered donations of boxes from local businesses and built structures out of them on the Memorial Student Center Plaza to simulate having to live on the streets. The event lasted the entire week, and the participants slept there through the night and gave out information and took donations during the day.

“Our chapter was the first ATO chapter across the nation to do this, and now several other chapters have followed in our footsteps and achieve our ultimate goal of raising awareness for the homeless situation not only in Huntington, but all over,” said Nathan Eakin, one of the participating members of the “go homeless” event.

Jacob Bryant, another member of Alpha Tau Omega and participant in the fundraiser, said the event was a huge fundraiser for them and their philanthropy, as all of their members were expected to participate and to help show the public that the homeless issue should not be ignored.

“It’s no secret that there are homeless people in Huntington,” Bryant said.

“Everyone is exposed to it daily. This event is important because it supports a cause that is universal and shows how anyone can step up and make a difference in our community. It is also important for the Marshall community to see Marshall’s Greek Life doing something positive in Huntington.”

All proceeds raised by the fraternity are donated to the Huntington City Mission, a nonprofit that provides shelter, food and care to those who are homeless in the city.

“Last year our goal was $3,000, so that was our goal this year,” Eakin said. “So far we have surpassed that and decided to raise the goal to $5,000. But the ultimate goal is raising awareness and bringing a positive change to Huntington.”

The fundraising event ended Sept. 22.

Breanna Francis can be contacted at [email protected].