By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes
Union Gospel Mission of Salem’s annual Walk for Hope drew more than 400 walkers and raised more than $30,000 for UGM programs Saturday, June 22.
The walk is held during summer months, when demand for UGM services typically decrease slightly, to remind local residents that there is no vacation from homelessness. However, during the past two years, need for services has increased (25 percent more meals and 40 percent more beds), while donations continue to wane. Organizers hoped to raise awareness in the community about the enduring need of hungry, hurting and homeless men, women and children, but also, as a community, to raise sufficient funds in order to meet the needs of the most vulnerable residents.
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