The First Annual Congressional Reception was an outstanding success. New Jersey was well represented today by more than one hundred (100) people including the formerly homeless, passionate advocates and housing providers from across the state. People traveled by train, bus and car to get here this afternoon because of the importance of this event.
(In the photo above are left to right are Alison Recca-Ryan, Corporation for Supportive Housing, Senator Menendez, Richard W. Brown, Monarch Housing Associates, Senator Lautenberg, Joyce Campbell, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Trenton.)
The Congressional Reception was organized in less than three weeks. Who would have thought that a request to “spend a day in DC to help end homelessness in New Jersey” would have gotten such a positive response? Special appreciation goes to the three co-sponsors – the Corporation for Supportive Housing, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Trenton, and the Mercer Alliance to End Homelessness for their leadership in working both with Monarch Housing Associates and everyone who attended to make this first annual Congressional Reception a success. The Congressional Reception was hosted by Senators Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez, and the gratitude of all advocates who participated is extended to both Senators and their staffs.
Among the members of Congress who attended included Senators Lautenberg and Menendez, Congress members Rush Holt, Albio Sires, Robert Andrews and Mike Ferguson. In addition, senior staff attended from Congress members Chris Smith, Steve Rothman and Bill Pascrell.
All of the members of Congress expressed support for ending homelessness in New Jersey. The formerly homeless, passionate advocates and housing providers at the Congressional Reception agreed to follow up with their members of Congress to insure their support of expanded funding for permanent, affordable and supportive housing in New Jersey.
Over the next day additional photographs will be posted along with other information and details.
The Second Annual Congressional Reception has been scheduled for July 16, 2008.