Dear Friends,

Thank you for your support throughout 2020.  We know it has been a difficult year for many, not only for us at The Open Hearth.  We greatly appreciate your continued interest and commitment to helping men who are experiencing homelessness get their lives back on track.

On December 2, our board chair, Brian Sullivan, shared some thoughts with The Open Hearth’s board and corporators at our Annual Meeting.  We were all so moved that we wanted to share his thoughts with you, our most valued supporters and friends. 

Here are Brian’s remarks:

Let’s be candid. 2020 has been a year marked with loss and uncertainty. 

 There have been times when it has been hard to know the right thing to do, or whom to trust, or where to turn in search of hope. Much uncertainty and many questions have entered the normally mundane aspects of our daily lives. It sometimes feels like hard work figuring out the right way to live your life. 

Let us pause for a moment in that space. Let’s consider the men that The Open Hearth serves, and has served for 136 years. These men live, often for long stretches, with the constant, acute experience of those same feelings of uncertainty. They come to The Open Hearth because they crave the certainty and safety that only a home can provide. They earn each other’s trust and learn to believe in themselves. And they discover and create hope for a brighter future. 

The men of The Open Hearth and their success stories serve as an inspiration to us all during this difficult time. And I know that these men and their chance at a better future is the reason that we have seen such an outpouring of support from our community this year. Everyone has faced a dose of hardship in 2020, and empathy for those less fortunate is now perhaps a little easier to come by for all of us. 

The Open Hearth family itself has not been spared by the troubles of 2020. We have had a great loss within our own family with the passing of Mr. Muhammad Ansari, long-time board member, in May of this year. He will be greatly missed.

We have also faced the uncertainty of how to provide a safe environment for men experiencing homelessness – and the staff who serve them – during a pandemic. In these uncertain times, it has been hard work for the men and staff of The Open Hearth to adapt to this new reality, so let’s take a moment to reflect on what we have accomplished this year. We have taken in hundreds of the most underserved souls in this region, and kept them safe, and clean, and fed, and warm, and sober. And that is an absolute good for men experiencing homelessness and our community.

 In a time when deciding whom to trust can be hard, we also have complete confidence in our Executive Director and her incredible staff. We know without a doubt that they will continue to carry out our mission – to help men help themselves. They will maintain the spirit and the viability of this amazing organization for our successors, and for the thousands of men they will serve 
as long as there is a need. 

In this way, while 2020 has certainly been a dark time, The Open Hearth is shining brighter than ever before. So many people have found themselves wanting to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others, and this organization serves as a beacon of hope and a clear path to that end. Every contribution, every piece of donated PPE, every donated cleaning supply has helped to keep the men of The Open Hearth safe. And for that we are truly grateful.

As I said earlier this year, this is not our first global pandemic and it will not be our last. This organization would not have made it this far or been able to touch as many lives as we have without your support and generosity. Thank you all – our donors, friends, volunteers, staff, board and corporators – on behalf of this great organization, The Open Hearth.

I would like to echo Brian’s thoughts and thank all of you – our donors, friends, volunteers, staff, board members and corporators.  Your continued commitment and support during these difficult times means more than ever to all of us at The Open Hearth.

Wishing you and yours a bright & healthy 2021!

Warmest regards,

Marilyn Rossetti
Executive Director

To learn more about The Open Hearth and how you can help, please use the following link:

Ways to Give