Summer is in full swing and our interns are hard at work! From co-coordinating our National Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week to cataloging our in-house library, these students are actively learning and contributing to NCH’s work. Get to know our interns and what has driven them to stand against homelessness.
Senior, College of the Holy Cross
Political Science and Italian
“I have lived in the same city in Rhode Island for most of my life and never took the opportunity to witness the suffering of those around me. While I worked for my local congressman last summer, I began to hear the stories of those impoverished in my local district, but still took very little direct action to help the situation. During my junior year, I studied abroad in Bologna, Italy, finally leaving my New England safety net for the first time. However, what I did not realize was that I would be directly witnessing those who were truly suffering from homelessness and poverty. Throughout the day, I would see people panhandling for money and at night, the same people would be sleeping under doorways and on public benches. It was sad to know that many had been suffering in Europe and, after having been in DC, to know that there are many suffering here in our own nation.
“Now as an intern for NCH, I hope to do all I can to help those who are suffering from homelessness through my work on the Homeless Bill of Rights. While it will not completely eradicate homelessness, I believe it will be the first step in gaining collective action to provide equal rights to all who are homeless.”
Elizabeth Jo Mason
2nd Year, University of Maryland College Park
Masters of Library and Information Science
“Living in Baltimore, Maryland most of my life, I have always been aware of the struggle of homeless people around me. I have passed by many people in the city who needed money or otherwise looked like they were in need of shelter. However, I did not think to do something about it until a friend from high school was personally stricken with homelessness.
“I chose to become a Cataloging Intern at NCH because it would allow me to become more directly involved in the process of educating homeless people and making a difference in their lives while gaining more cataloging experience for my Masters of Library and Information Science degree.”
Junior, Allegheny College
Political Science and Philosophy
“I have always felt inspired to engage with the world through a more objective standpoint than merely my own. I had overlooked the perspectives and lives of those experiencing homelessness for too long, which is an issue that remains discrete if existent at all in my small, rural hometown. The internship offers a unique way to engage with this and also interact with our country’s political framework as a basis for institutional change.”
Junior, Vanderbilt University
“Active citizenship includes addressing the inescapable and mounting issue of homelessness in our nation. This lesson I have learned from my upbringing in Brooklyn, New York and teachings at Vanderbilt University. This summer I am fortunate enough to be surrounded by the staff of the National Coalition for the Homeless who are dedicating years of their lives to alleviating the conditions of those who do not have homes. My role as a Research Fellow, and the work to publish the 2012 Hate Crimes Report Against the Homeless, will hopefully advance their efforts of which I am just beginning to understand. I am learning and I am being humbled by my time here.”