Joann Bjornson, Executive Director of Interfaith Council for Homeless Families of Morris County, coordinated the County Project Homeless Connect event and welcomed all participants to the kick off. She reminded the crowd that while they were all freezing for about half and hour or so through the kick off, there were people who slept out on the Morristown Green overnight. She explained Project Homeless Connect is a way of bringing together service providers, community members and homeless individuals to connect them to much needed services and raise awareness about homelessness in Morris County.
NJ State Senator-elect Joe Pennacchio emphasized the need to continue efforts to end homelessness and the need for those on all sides of the issue to take responsibility. NJ State Senate President Richard Codey emphasized the need to continue strong collaboration between non-profits and government as they work to build more affordable housing and end homelessness in New Jersey.
At 10am the Project Homeless Connect event took place at St. Peter’s Episcopal church, just a few blocks from the Morristown Green. The line of individuals waiting to enter the site and receive services and give-aways was long despite the early, cold morning start. Information about various services, give-aways, hot showers, hair-cuts, massage therapy and bus card were made available to individuals and families among other things at the site.