The annual Hope Festival is an incredible day of service that supports in-need families across the greater Seattle area. Hopefest not only provides more than 1,000 guests with free groceries, clothes, hygiene items, and books; but also provides clients with free services such as haircuts, dental care, vaccinations, health screenings, and much more.Updates from The Hope Festival 2021
On August 14th, 400 volunteers came together to serve 650 individuals experiencing poverty and homelessness in the greater Seattle area at a Covid-safe, summer edition of Hope Festival 2021.
Guests received free groceries, hygiene supplies, clothing, toys for the kids, books, and more. Local service providers offered personal services including HIV testing, glaucoma screenings & free eyeglass, dental screenings, hearing screenings, Covid vaccinations, pet vaccinations, and more. Guests connected with local agencies providing long-term care at the Connection Center, local employers came to hire on the spot, and Seattle Humane Society brought six kittens to cuddle with guests in the kitten cuddle booth. Several lucky raffle winners even walked away with a brand-new laptop, bicycle, or gift basket. Guests and volunteers alike left with a newfound sense of hope.
We couldn’t be prouder to once again show how youth leaders are capable of being the change we wish to see in the world. We were able to do what even the City of Seattle couldn’t—run a safe, in-person, resource exchange event. During this time of extreme need amidst the pandemic, we are extremely proud to have been able to safely provide valuable supplies and services to those in need across the greater Seattle area. In speaking with guests at the event, our mission of running a service event that left people with a sense of hope was achieved. One woman, who’s little girl had just won the brand-new bicycle she had her eyes on during the raffle, said that she now finally had a way to transport herself to school this next year. Another family thanked us for the opportunity to receive Covid vaccinations as well as a wide range of supplies and services for every member of their family. It is these individual stories of hope that remind us how important our work is, and moreover, how important the little things are.
As a group of students running our nonprofit and this annual event, we are no stranger to obstacles coming our way. This year was different, however—we were required to take on the roles of public health officials as we worked to plan and execute an event that was safe for all 1,050 volunteers and guests alike. We are incredibly proud that we were able to do just. It is just another embodiment of the truth that age is just a number, and youth are truly capable of being the change we wish to see in the world.
We would like to extend a huge thank you to our sponsors and partners who made the 2021 Hope Festival a reality. Without their support and belief in our work, simply none of this would have been possible. Thank you so much Riley Way for supporting us through the hardships of the pandemic. We appreciate your consistent mentorship and workshops which allow us to pave the future of the Hope Festival and the people we serve.