Winter Walk: A Step Towards Ending Homelessness

More often than not, February in Boston brings frigid temps and lots and lots of snow. During that time, the city takes a walk in the shoes of some of its most underserved populations—those who do not have a warm place to call home during these cold winter months. Winter Walk, established in the fall of 2016 by Paul English, is a two-mile walk which starts and ends on Copley Plaza. The trek raises awareness for the issues of homelessness and housing insecurity, and brings together people from all walks of life, allowing those who are housed and unhoused to walk shoulder to shoulder in unity toward the same goal.

For those participating and those supporting, the walk not only brings awareness surrounding the issue of homelessness but also brings attention to its root causes and provides ways in which one can take action. Over the years, Winter Walk has collaborated with many organizations that focus on homelessness. These organizations fit seamlessly into Winter Walk’s overall mission and also offer supporters broader knowledge of the effects of homelessness on individuals, especially youths, and their families.

This year, Winter Walk has a new home at Boston Medical Center. Though still its own entity, the event will now live under the umbrella of BMC where the hospital will act as both a sponsor and partner. BMC has been a supporter of Winter Walk for a few years now and has been proudly attended by members of Team BMC—the hospital’s athletic fundraising arm. Furthermore, many of Winter Walk’s partners already work alongside BMC, such as Pine Street Inn and Boston Health Care for the Homeless.

With a percentage of BMC’s patient population facing homelessness or the risk of becoming homeless, the cause holds a special place with the hospital and makes the partnership even more meaningful. Ari Barbanell, director of Winter Walk, says, “It’s an incredible symbiotic relationship and the fact that this is a city-wide issue, it makes sense that we are together as one as this is Boston’s medical center.”

The next Winter Walk will talk place on Sunday, February 9, 2020. The walk will be followed by a community breakfast for all participants as well a speaking portion which will feature stories from people who are currently experiencing or have formerly experienced homelessness. With more than 1,200 walkers last year, Winter Walk aims to make 2020 even bigger, continuing to shine a light on all the impactful, life-changing work happening in the city and surrounding communities. To join Team BMC in the upcoming Winter Walk, please click here.