November 23, 2021 (Philadelphia) – November 13th marked the first day of Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, which has helped bring greater awareness to a cold reality: more than half a million people in the U.S. experience homelessness at any given night. And because of COVID-19 and the eviction moratorium ending, we know a spike in numbers is in the immediate future.
Enter Back on My Feet (BoMF), an organization that takes a different approach to address real circumstances that attribute to someone experiencing homelessness. Circumstances like isolation from community, double digit debt, former incarceration, and lack of sufficient income. BoMF combats homelessness through the power of fitness, community support and essential employment and housing resources. It leverages the power of community to help people form trusting relationships with their peers.
Fitness is only 10% to 15% of the program BoMF has to offer – where volunteers run with members to create a sense of community and strengthen bonds. The program primarily consists of practical support of employment, resume-building, credit repair, short-term housing needs, and other career and lifestyle support. Incorporating these components into the program leads to members having long-term stability and self-sufficiency.
The results speak for themselves: BoMF members not only gain employment, nearly 85 percent of members remain employed after a year; over 40 percent receive a wage increase within their first six months; and 21 percent are promoted.
These life changing outcomes are possible because of the organization’s partnerships with companies like Accenture. At Accenture, BoMF members have access to a “Skills to Succeed Learning Exchange” course, designed to help build the knowledge and skills to get a job and achieve long-term success. In partnership with BoMF, Accenture’s Skills to Succeed offers a blend of training online or through a smartphone to learn the basics and then workshops to build deeper skills and receive coaching.
The success achieved through this partnership can best be described by Back on My Feet Denver beneficiary, Albert.
Albert was struggling with addiction and homelessness less than two years ago. Today, through the help of Back on My Feet and Accenture volunteers who provided fitness, coaching and financial support, Albert landed his dream job as a senior estimator with Foothills Commercial Builders. He now makes a full time salary with benefits, owns a car and has his own apartment. He credits a lot of his success to the “support, advice and interview prep” he did with Accenture volunteer, Kristen Poggensee.
The BoMF vision is to change the entire narrative in this country about what someone experiencing homelessness can do. Albert is a testament to that vision. People who are currently unhoused are fully capable human beings and BoMF, along with their partners, invests the time and energy needed to help them flourish.
To learn more and get involved, visit backonmyfeet.org/get-involved.
About Back on My Feet
Operating in 14 major cities coast-to-coast, Back on My Feet recruits members at homeless and addiction facilities and begins with a commitment to run three days a week. The second phase of the program, Next Steps, provides educational support, job training programs, employment partnership referrals and housing resources. Back on My Feet has helped more than 7,500 individuals secure jobs and homes with the help of more than 150,000 volunteers and supporters. Every $1 invested in Back on My Feet returns nearly $2.50 to the local community through increased economic output and cost savings. For more information, visit backonmyfeet.org. For more information, visit backonmyfeet.org and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Accenture is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Combining unmatched experience and specialized skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions — underpinned by the world’s largest delivery network — Accenture works at the intersection of business and technology to help clients improve their performance and create sustainable value for their stakeholders. With 492,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries, Accenture drives innovation to improve the way the world works and lives. Visit us at www.accenture.com.
Ashley Austin, Communications Manager (firstname.lastname@example.org)