The 4th of July weekend is the ultimate summer celebration. It launches picnics, ice cream, fireworks and memories galore. Amidst all of the celebrations and festivities, the 4th of July reminds us of the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the words we hold so dear:
“…We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. …”
The principles and values described in the Declaration of Independence are uniquely American. As a democratic society, we work to uphold and protect these values each day. We know that in 1776, in a practical sense, the Declaration of Independence applied to and benefitted a certain class of persons with wealth and property. However, over time, the words themselves caught the imagination of persons and communities left out from the original text. The values, “all men created equal”, “unalienable rights”, “life, liberty, and happiness” transcended the original class of men and appealed to women, persons of color, all persons who did not own property.
Today, thanks to historic and ongoing social justice struggles, American democracy and the Declaration of Independence includes millions more persons than did its original text.
There’s much for us to celebrate in the Declaration of Independence. It’s the foundation of our 241 year old democracy. And, the struggles to realize and preserve its fullest potential continue.
For many of our neighbors and friends, finding safe and stable homes from which they can establish their own foundation – – their personal declaration of independence – – seems remote. And indeed, our sisters and brothers who are experiencing homelessness also have a right to reach their fullest potential.
Finding affordable homes in the Quad Cities remains difficult for many:
- persons and families with extremely low-incomes,
- those working two or three jobs,
- military veterans coping with PTSD and other combat related injuries, and
- people with mental health and substance use challenges.
Taking on homelessness is a big challenge. And–with your help–Humility of Mary is working to address the root causes of homelessness. We’re keeping families and children safe.
HMHI bringing freedom
Our programs are showing great results. Our participants are building new and stronger foundations, creating safer and healthier environments for growth and long-term change. With the help of our program, two parents have recently reached their goals by earning their degrees in nursing and criminal justice. They can now join us in giving back to the community. Click here to read an example.
So far in 2017, eight households have advanced. They’ve moved into permanent housing opportunities of their own. New families are moving in. They look forward to bright futures for themselves and their children. By fully embracing the programs we offer, they’re more likely to reach their full potential as individuals and families.
The children in our programs are also affected. When children see mom or dad turning life around, getting degrees and jobs, they, in turn, begin to dream big dreams for themselves. We currently have a 14 year old who knows one day he will be a veterinarian. He has created a business card, and he’s mowing lawns to save for his education. The spark of a dream glows brightly in his mind. He’s developing his entrepreneurial skills as he works to save for his future. We’re helping him reach his full capacity.
Back in 1776, men of great vision and uncompromising spirit, gathered and drafted the Declaration of Independence. It was the beginning of a historic journey for all Americans to embrace freedom. We know that some thought it couldn’t be done. Naysayers said we’d never attain freedom. But, ‘We the People’ prevailed. As it was then, it can be now. Join with Humility of Mary as we pursue this vision: homelessness doesn’t belong in the QCA.
The “self-evident truths” we hold dear are as true today as they were 241 years ago.