December 2017 


As we embark on the holidays and New Year, we want to take a break  from the hustle and bustle of holiday preparation, and take the opportunity  to  thank you for your continued support. Your commitment really does make  difference in the lives of the families we serve each and every day.  On behalf of everyone at Shelter House, thank you for all that you do and Happy Holidays!

Thank you to everyone who made this year's Thanksgiving extra special for the families at our shelters. The support we received ranged from Thanksgiving Food Drives from organizations like Kiddie Academy of South Riding and hCentive, Inc., turkey meal donations from our friends at Paisano's Pizza, to individuals in the community coming together to serve food to our families. Without your support, our families would not have been able to have a Thanksgiving meal and celebration. We are grateful for all your support!

As you continue to cross presents off your holiday shopping list, remember those who are in need of your time and generosity, but may not be able to ask for your help. At a time when warm homes and family gatherings are common, the families experiencing homelessness at Shelter House are not as fortunate. 

This year, we are asking all of our supporters to expand beyond the gift of toys to include other useful items from our Holiday Giving Flyer such as gift cards (gas/metro/grocery store/Target), sheets, towels, flatware, glasses, pots, pans, to give to our families as they are preparing to move from shelter into permanent housing. 

Your gifts will truly make this holiday a dream come true for all of our families!


The  National Alliance to End Homelessness launched an advocacy campaign this fall  to ensure Congress makes ending homelessness a priority in any deal that is made, but they need our help to execute it. 

Congress has until December 8th to pass a budget for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018, or face a government shutdown. By increasing funding to the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Grants, 40,000 more people can be housed nationally.

How can you help? 
  • Starting today - e-mail your Members of Congress. We want to get it in Congress's mind now how important federal funding is to ending homelessness.Click here to begin your e-mail.
  • By December 8th - Submit a Community-wide letter to Congress. Gather the stakeholders in your community (elected officials, business leaders, religious leaders, and partners) to sign on to a community-wide letter to submit to Congress before the December 8th deadline for them to take action. If you would like to take the lead in organizing sign-on's for your community, contact Rashida at today.
Thank  you in advance for your advocacy to make homelessness a top priority in Congress! 

Shelter House is honored to be partnering with John Wood, owner of 29 Diner, for their Season of Giving Holiday Dinner Celebration in benefit of all Shelter House families. In addition to providing a holiday feast for all 60 of our families, 29 Diner is aiming to ensure all families receive gifts for the holiday to match their wish lists.  

We are asking the community and our dedicated supporters to come together and contribute to this wonderful celebration. 29 Diner's goal is to provide a gift to each child and family member at Shelter House. In addition to gift donations, we are also encouraging everyone to consider sponsoring a family (or two) to assist with meals throughout the holiday season.

To view this year's wish list for 29 Diner's Season of Giving Dinner Celebration, please  click here. All donations will be accepted from now through Friday, December 15. For more information, contact John Wood at 703-715-7886 or 


Stacey Piper has been on Shelter House's Board of Directors for 4 years and brings great value to our organization. As Principal of her own business, Stacey Piper Consulting, Stacey brings a deep understanding of government clients and how to position companies who work with the public sector to increase awareness, enhance reputation in order to increase favorability. She is an accomplished, results-driven, business development and marketing professional with more than 20 years of experience. Her network is robust and she can bring in the right subcontractors to team with her to deliver any project related to marketing and business development! 

Board members bring experience, wisdom and strategic thinking - can you elaborate on yours?
My professional background and community involvement helps me bring a unique perspective to the Board. Whether it is areas of attracting, retaining, motivating volunteers, to getting business professionals from the community engaged and involved, to mentoring staff on technical areas like brand equity and marketing strategy - I strive to contribute actively to the mission and vision of the organization and its leadership. 

What interests you most about Shelter House and our mission? 
The issue that first attracted me to Shelter House was homeless families and the staggering number of children in Fairfax County public schools, who face homelessness. When I learned that there were working parents living in shelter because they could not afford housing in our community, it was a wake-up call. Since becoming involved, when I hear stories from families already in shelter and general community supporters about their own struggles with homelessness, I become even more committed to the mission of Shelter House. 

What are your dreams for the community?
I hope that the community can become more involved in what the social and health issues are around them and they are willing to give of their gifts to help. I wish for a day when a homeless mother panhandling near a shopping mall will accept counsel and guidance of Shelter House's supportive services or shelters. I pray for a day when women and children suffering abuse at home can be confident to leave the security of their village and come to a Shelter House facility and know they will be taken care of and given the tools and support they need to succeed independently. 

Recently, FlexProfessionals, LLC, held their Second Annual Back-to-Work Charity Drive. Through their collaborative efforts in the community, FlexProfessionals collected over 2,000 articles of clothing! The Team organized  donated suits, jackets, skirts, dresses, blouses, pants and accessories at Women Giving Back that will give confidence to women at Shelter House as they pursue new work opportunities toward an independent life.  

What does FlexProfessionals want its gifts to accomplish and why is that important to your organization?
We hope that our donations of professional clothing to Shelter House help give women in need the confidence to go into a job interview and feel good about themselves. Confidence walking into an interview is essential and can literally affect if the person is hired or not. We hope that these donated clothes will help women feel good about themselves and remind them that they have a lot to offer to prospective employers.

What motivates you to stay involved with Shelter House?
We learned so much from Raven Dickerson, Director of Artemis House & Programs, who came to our office in October to conduct an "Unmask Domestic Violence Advocate Training". It was extremely informative and eye-opening in terms of the number of victims feeling dehumanized by domestic violence within our very own community. We realized domestic violence affects people no matter what someone's background, financial situation, level in education, etc., and can literally affect anyone. This training alone motivated us to stay involved and continue to support Shelter House through clothing donations and job support services. 

What are FlexProfessionals dreams for the community? 
Our dream is for the community to continue to come together and fight poverty and domestic violence until it no longer exists!

Growing Together in the community is Grant Thornton's commitment to community engagement. Grant Thornton is passionate about volunteering their time to help others in the local community. This year, over 100 volunteers participated in the 2nd Annual DC Metro Grant Thornton United Day of Service in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. Shelter House was honored that 20 of those volunteers chose to spend their Day of Service at our Katherine Hanley Family Shelter making a difference in the families' lives we serve.  

What interests Grant Thornton most about Shelter House and our mission?
We appreciate Shelter House and how they support and encourage the families in shelter. They provide ideas and opportunities for adults to interview for jobs in the community as well as ensure they move on to an independence, which must be an amazing feeling for those exiting shelter. 

What was Grant Thornton's most rewarding experience when volunteering at Shelter House? 
We could visually see and feel an impact even after only being at Katherine Hanley for a short time. When we first arrived, it was impossible to walk through without stepping on donations. By the time we finished, there was extra space on the shelves and it was orderly so the Shelter House staff can easily find and distribute items to the families quickly.

What would you tell someone who is thinking about volunteering at Shelter House?
In an area as wealthy as Fairfax County, some may believe that there are not families in need, however, there are, and only a percentage of them are there at Shelter House. We would encourage anyone who is thinking about volunteering, to make that thought into an action, experience it, and help spread to the word of the wonderful organization. 

Joe Meyer, Executive Director and CEO, was recently interviewed on Channel 16 News discussing the significance of the generous donation Shelter House received from Fairfax Library Foundation To support the Birth-to-5 population, the Fairfax Library Foundation provided a donation of 60 Early Literacy Library Bags to our Katherine Hanley Family Shelter to be distributed among the families we serve. The library bags included books, crayons, bubbles, puppets, activity booklets, library materials, bookmarks and more!   A special thank you to Fairfax Library Foundation for their donation to further educate the children we serve! 

Shelter House is a community-based, non-profit 501(c)3 organization and your gifts directly support our mission and programs. 

Please consider making a recurring donation this holiday season, to help support our work within the community. Thank you in advance! 



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