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Off the Streets-Sleepout kicks off homeless awareness month in Harford Co.

Ripken homeless tents .jpeg
Posted at 10:34 PM, Oct 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-28 23:16:29-04

HARFORD COUNTY, Md. — Grab your tents, sleeping bags and fold out chairs, we're heading to Leidos Field at Ripken Stadium for the Off the Streets-Sleepout.

This is an event to kick off homeless awareness month for November.

It’s a night under the stars on the Leidos Baseball Field at the Off the Streets-Sleepout.

It's organized by the Harford Family House to bring awareness to the homeless community in Harford County.

"Homeless has many different faces and people become homeless for many different reasons and Harford Family House and Welcome One Shelter are a beacon of hope for these individuals,” said Joe Ayler, Harford Family House board member.

Bringing together families for music, food, a movie and understanding.

"It's not us trying to pretend that we're homeless, we're just out here saying that we will not sleep comfortably in our bed while other people are experiencing homelessness in Harford County,” said Vashelle Nino, Director of Marketing and Communications.

It's also a time to stuff the van, where anyone can drop off much needed items for those staying in the shelters.

Harford Family Stronger.jpeg

“I like to do what I can to make the world a better place,” said Chris Fendrik, an attendee of Off the Streets.

Some like Fendrik show up, not to camp out, but to give back and set an example for future generations.

So we like to share our fortune with other people that are in need and we also like to encourage my son to also do the same,” said Fendrik.

Brian Oster set up camp for the cause, but says he didn't realize homelessness was so common in Harford County.

"I really didn't even know myself, but I’m coming from Baltimore where you see them often out on the streets. So it's an important issue,” said Oster an attendee of "Off the Streets.”

All money raised will go toward Harford Family House for their homeless shelters. This is the first of many events that will continue throughout next month.