Week long nightly church sponsored flashlight vigil for Nickelsville starts Sunday
As the deadline for the closure of the homeless encampment, Nickelsville aproaches a group of West Seattle-White Center churches, the Westside Inferfaith Network (WIN)*, met this week and decided to hold a vigil at Nickelsville's parking lot each evening next week (Sun. 8/25 thru Sat. 8/31).
They've chosen this course of action based on these facts:
-Nickelsville is closing soon & there are still 160+ residents with no confirmed place to move,
-there's a steady increase of homeless people (recently 9 families asked shelter at N'ville in a 13 day period--& many couples/singles keep coming--none of them were looking for "freebies!),
-2-1-1 reports shelters are full (most people coming to Nickelsville are told to do so by 2-1-1),
-it's not safe to live in the green belt or city streets--as many beaten or robbed people can confirm,
-literally tens of thousands of people in our area struggle on the brink of homelessness. There will be future homeless people.
In their statement about the event WIN said:
"We care deeply about the plight of each of these people. At our WIN meeting the flow of comments basically was "what can we do to help all these people...what can we do to show we care...what can we do to enlighten our community about this situation." The idea that arose was to have a silent witness of love and caring at Nickelsville's parking lot--for the people there AND for all the struggling people in our community.
Westside Interfaith Network (WIN) church group invites anyone who cares about homeless kids/elderly/or adults to stand with a flashlight at Nickelsville's parking lot any time 6-10 PM each evening from Sun. 8/25 to Sat. 8/31. As people of faith we help bring God's light into our world; and we shed light on the plight of the 10,000's who are homeless--or on the brink of homelessness--in our area. Where will the current--and future--homeless go after 9/1? Shelters are full; greenbelts are not safe. In the past 13 days, 9 newly-homeless families arrived at N'ville! This is simply our churches/community saying, "we care about our neighbors in need." Come to SE corner of W.Marginal Wy & SW Highland Pk with a flashlight, park on edge of road, join others and "let your little light shine."
The hope is that: people will come once/twice/or thrice, and that everyone will pass this information on to friends/family/or foes. Since there is limited parking space near the camp, suggest people car-pool or realize they may have to walk a wee bit. Bring a camp chair if you cannot stand very long.
*For your information: Westside Interfaith Network (WIN) is a group of 20+ congregations of all faiths in the West Seattle-White Center area. Since forming in 2001 (as West Seattle Churches) we have worked together to provide a "network" of help and services for people in need throughout our community. In addition to each church providing direct help, we work with local human service agencies to strengthen their resources for helping people. We also provide ways anyone in our community can become involved in helping our "neighbors."