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Tuesday, August 20, 2019 Affiliate News

Battling Family Homelessness with Haircuts


Prince shows off his long hairPrince was three when his big sister Aneshia was diagnosed with cancer. At a loss for how to help his sister, he decided to grow his hair.

In the middle of this crisis, the Union County family lost their home.

Statistics show homelessness is especially traumatic for children – they’re more likely to be placed in special education programs, repeat a grade, and become depressed, anxious, or suicidal. Nearly half of these children drop out of school at least once.

Prince’s family didn’t want Prince and Aneshia to become part of these statistics. They learned of Family Promise, the national leader addressing the issue of family homelessness, which helped them find a new home and achieve stability.

When Aneshia passed away two years ago, Family Promise raised money to cover funeral expenses. And Prince continued growing his hair.

Nine years since he last visited a barbershop, 12-year-old Prince has decided to honor his late sister by cutting and donating his locks. He wants to make the occasion even more significant by spreading awareness of the crisis of family homelessness and raising money for Family Promise, the organization that helped him and his family when they had nowhere else to turn.

On Thursday, August 22, Prince will cut and donate his hair.

Of his decision to support Family Promise by hosting this event, Prince says, “Once we were homeless, and they helped us a lot, helped us find a house. I hope everyone comes.”

Prince is accepting sponsors for his haircut – he has already exceeded his fundraising goal of $1,000 – and Mike Tribuna from Luigi’s Barbershop in Union will offer haircuts to Prince’s supporters with proceeds going to Family Promise. All are welcome to join Prince, his family, and the community in honoring Aneshia’s memory and supporting the fight against family homelessness at 7 p.m. this Thursday, August 22, at St. Michael’s Church, 40 Alden Street, Cranford. Or make a donation to Family Promise.

Founded in Summit in 1988, Family Promise’s 200 affiliates across the country engage 200,000 volunteers. Its innovative approach to addressing homelessness keeps families together and gives them the skills and tools to achieve lasting independence. The organization serves nearly 100,000 individuals each year. For more information or to learn about volunteering with Family Promise, please visit www.familypromise.org.

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