On Thursday, February 6th, we held our first Evening with Friendship House fundraiser. Held at the Hagley Soda House in Wilmington and catered by Caffe Gelato, this event saw 100 attendees come out to support our organization. At this event, two different speakers, Timeeka Cropper and Silas Harrison, shared their stories of how Friendship House helped them overcome adversity. “Being raised by the streets and growing up in the system is not what I want you to remember,” Timeeka said of her journey. “I want you to remember the perfect picture. The perfect picture is this right here, all of you.” Timeeka came to Friendship House in June 2019 through our Women’s Job Training program, which operates out of our Clothing Bank. She graduated from this program and is now a full-time employee at our Clothing Bank. “The Friendship House Clothing Bank has helped me change my energy, accomplish my goals, and to understand my purpose,” Timeeka said.
Silas then spoke about his journey from a displaced man who would shower in sprinklers before Sunday morning breakfast into a college student. “When I started out, I was living under a bridge. I was sober at that point,” Silas said. “I gave myself to the Lord. I heard about a church that had Sunday morning breakfast and I was like, ‘Why not go to a church Sunday morning breakfast?’” At our Sunday Breakfast, Silas connected with Friendship House staff, who helped enable Silas to take the GED. “Bill was like, ‘Did you pass?’” Silas recounted. “I was like, ‘Yeah.’ He was like, ‘Well, do you want to go to college?’ I said, ‘I would love to go to college.’” Silas is now a straight-A college student in his fourth year who has graduated from our Men’s Transitional Housing program. He is also a staff member of Friendship House working to help others through this program.
We also heard from our Executive Director, Kim Eppehimer, who shared how we are piloting a new model in our Transitional Housing program. We are now able to offer the most vulnerable individuals more time to focus on recovery above all else, including seeking employment. This is thanks to funding from Highmark Delaware Blue Cross Blue Shield, the Longwood Foundation, and other organizations.
We extend our sincere gratitude to those who attended An Evening with Friendship House, supporting our mission to unite people with loving, supportive communities they can call home.