Villanova Continues Tradition of 39th Annual National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week November 15-21

Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week (HHAW) originated at Villanova University in 1975 and has now spread to more than 500 campuses and communities nationwide

VILLANOVA, Pa. – Villanova University will observe its 39th annual Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week (HHAW) November 15-21 with a full slate of activities that aim to educate, advocate and serve those whose lives are afflicted by this pair of poverty-induced conditions.

The week of programming will include food and clothing drives, a Solidarity Sleep Out, and a keynote address by Kevin Ryan, CEO of Covenant House, winner of this year’s Adela Dwyer – St. Thomas of Villanova Peace Award.  The award recognizes an individual or group for outstanding contributions to the understanding of the meaning and conditions of justice and peace in human communities. Ryan’s presentation will be held at 3 p.m., Friday, Nov. 21 in Driscoll Hall Auditorium on the University’s Main Campus. The event is free and open to the public.

HHAW originated at Villanova University in 1975 under the guidance of the late Father Ray Jackson, OSA, an Augustinian priest whose legacy also includes co-founding the University’s Center for Peace and Justice Education. The initiative began when a group of Villanova students, recognizing the power education could play in the fight against homelessness, decided to coordinate a week of activities around the issues. In the years since, this week of coordinated activities and education expanded beyond Villanova to more than 500 campuses and communities, in the process becoming the most widely organized hunger and homelessness event of its type nationwide. 

National HHAW is now an annual event held the week before Thanksgiving – jointly sponsored by the National Student Campaign against Hunger and Homelessness (NSCHH) and the National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH). At Villanova, HHAW is co-sponsored by the Centers for Peace & Justice Education and Campus Ministry at Villanova University. Villanova also partners with numerous local and national organizations for the annual event, including Catholic Relief Services (CRS), The National Coalition for the Homeless, Project HOME, Back on My Feet, Catholic Network of Volunteer Service, etc. 

The week’s full schedule of events includes:

Saturday, November 15                

  • Super Fresh Food Drive, 1305 West Chester Pike, Havertown, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Sunday, November 16                  

  • Super Fresh Food Drive, 1305 West Chester Pike, Havertown, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Masses Focused on Hunger & Homelessness -- 5:30p.m., 7p.m., and 9p.m. 

Tuesday, November 18  

  • Can Collections, South Campus Market and 2nd Storey Market, 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.
  • Hunger Run with “Back On My Feet” organization, starts at the Oreo, 4 p.m.
  • HHAW Reflection: – St. Rita’s Chapel, 6 p.m.

Wednesday, November 19           

  • Fair Trade Craft Sale, Connelly Center, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Can Collections, South Campus Market and 2nd Storey Market, 9 a.m. – 11 p.m.

Thursday, November 20

  • Fast Day during lunch hours
  • “Middle-Man” Clothing Drive, Connelly/Oreo, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • NCH Faces of Homelessness Panel, CEER 001, 6 – 7:30 p.m.
  • Solidarity Sleep Out, at the Oreo, begins with Reflection at 10 p.m.

Friday, November 20          

  • Turkey Drive, drop-off at St. Rita’s Hall, 9 – 11 a.m.
  • Post Graduate Volunteer Service Fair, East/West Lounges of Dougherty, 7 – 9 p.m.
  • Keynote Address by Kevin Ryan, CEO of Covenant House, winner of the 2014 Adela Dwyer Peace Award, Driscoll Auditorium, 3 p.m.

About Villanova University: Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's six colleges – the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing, the College of Professional Studies and the Villanova University School of Law. As students grow intellectually, Villanova prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them. For more, visit www.villanova.edu