On October 1, hundreds gathered together in the ballroom of the Atlanta Athletic Club to raise $491,920 on behalf of Rainbow Village and its ongoing mission to bring help, hope, housing and healing to families experiencing homelessness. In the days that followed, the nonprofit presented a challenge to its following to meet the $500,000 goal it had set for its “We Are Family” Benefit Gala. That fanbase stepped forward to close the gap with a final tally of $501,970, making it possible for Rainbow Village to continue to provide transitional housing and transformational programming to the families it serves.
“At just two and a half acres, our campus is big enough to accommodate 30 families at a time for up to two years,” said Melanie Conner, CEO of Rainbow Village. “In 2021, we served 35 individual families — providing 27,000+ bed nights. We are on track to surpass those numbers this year. Unfortunately, the need is great. For more than 2,000 families in Gwinnett County alone, they are either homeless or precariously housed. We receive calls every single day from families seeking our help. Right now, every single apartment at Rainbow Village is filled and we have nowhere to place them. We need to do more. The funds we raised during this year’s Benefit Gala will aid in the expansion of our programs beyond the borders of Rainbow Village in hopes of aiding families before they experience homelessness.”
During the Gala, Rainbow Village graduate, Charnette Brown, spoke before the crowd of 298 supporters, sharing her very personal journey from illness to homelessness to great success beyond the borders of the Duluth-based nonprofit’s campus. The Gala also served as a forum for the presentation of the 2022 Joel P. Hudson Humanitarian Award to Tom and Marshall Barton for the selfless gifts of their time and treasure to a number of nonprofits and community organizations throughout the area, including Marshall’s service on the Rainbow Village board.
Over the months to come, Rainbow Village will promote a year-end campaign to fuel its goal to expand its reach to families in need beyond its campus in 2023. To support those efforts, individual donors and corporations can make a one-time donation or become a monthly recurring donor of Rainbow Village by texting Giftofhope to 844-422-6444.