The Salvation Army of Wake County’s Project CATCH (Community Action Targeting Children who are Homeless) will host its second annual Early Childhood Education and Resource Fall Festival on Thursday, October 18 from 3-6 p.m. in the parking lot of The Salvation Army of Wake County’s Judy D. Zelnak Center of Hope, 1863 Capital Blvd., Raleigh, NC 27604. In addition, The Salvation Army of Wake County will host a job fair from 2-4 p.m. inside of the Center of Hope.
Both events are free and open to the public.
Part of the purpose of the festival is to bring together, in one location, families experiencing homelessness, and connect them to childcare and early intervention resources for their children. Donated items such as clothing, books and baby items will be made available to attendees as well.
The family-friendly atmosphere will include food, food trucks, games, prizes and more.
“Connecting families and their young children to early childhood care services is crucial to the healthy development of the child and helping them move out of homelessness,” says Jennifer Tisdale, The Salvation Army of Wake County Project CATCH coordinator. “We are so excited that we are able to provide these services all in one spot for our families in a fun, family focused way.”
Tisdale is excited about this year’s event after the success the event had last year.
Homelessness has a devastating impact on young children and families and can significantly impact the physical, cognitive and social emotional development of young children. Additionally, it can create significant barriers, such as transportation to obtaining needed early care and education services. Over half of children experiencing homelessness are under the age of six. In North Carolina, one in 26 children is experiencing homelessness and the majority of children are not being served in early learning programs.
Additionally, the problem in Wake County continues to grow. There was an overall increase in school-aged children experiencing homelessness by 27 percent between 2014 and 2017.
This event is supported through a grant from the Division of Child Development and Early Intervention to Project CATCH of the Salvation Army in Wake County.
Who: The Salvation Army of Wake County
What: The Salvation Army of Wake County Project CATCH Early Childhood Education and Resource Fall Festival AND Job Fair
When: Thursday, October 18; Fall Festival is 3 – 6 p.m. and Job Fair is 2-4 p.m.Where: The Salvation Army of Wake County
Judy D. Zelnak Center of Hope
1863 Capital Blvd.
Raleigh, NC 27604