NEWTON, NJ - Birth Haven is a shelter for Homeless Pregnant Woman and their Babies located in Newton. Birth Haven is a privately run, non-profit organization providing shelter, support and education for its residents.
Historically, Birth Haven has had a large scale fall fundraising event, such as a dinner dance or a casino night. This year, Birth Haven is raising funds by different means.
Co-chairman of the Board, John Ursin said, “We have great success with in person fundraisers, but as a board we try to maximize every charitable dollar we receive. In person event costs can often cost 40-50 percent of the money raised. We will still have some in person events, but we wanted to try and maximize our efficiency by leveraging technology and social media.”
The “12 Days of Hope” drive is an appeal during the Holiday season to ask our supporters to support our shelter and program for homeless pregnant women and babies. Rather than make it just a direct solicitation campaign, Birth Haven created an amateur series of short videos that will be released through the upcoming holiday season.
The “12 Days of Hope” campaign is a series of one to two minute videos, featuring messages from the Birth Haven Board, supporters, current and past residents.
Ursin said, “Birth Haven is a charity that is not difficult to explain. We take in pregnant woman who have been kicked out of their homes and might be living in a car or outside. Hearing stories of a pregnant woman sleeping in a tent in the winter will break your heart. At Birth Haven, the mothers find a warm, safe loving home. Babies born at Birth Haven have a warm, caring crib for their first nights on earth instead of being in a dangerous environment or being exposed to the elements.”
You can view the videos that make up the “12 Days of Hope” by visiting www.birthhaven.org. They will be sent to your e-mail address or you can check back in every couple of days. Executive Director Tina Magarino said “the videos provide unique insight into Birth Haven from a number of different perspectives. We hope people will be inspired and send them to friends and circulate them on social media through Facebook and other outlets. We hope to tap into the power of social media to benefit our residents”.
The videos will be released starting on Giving Tuesday - November 28 and will continue until December 22. The last video was made by volunteer freshmen students at Pope John High School and completes the drive with a little bit of holiday cheer.
Using technology and social media will allow Birth Haven to use more than 95percent of the proceeds of this drive to support the Shelter and its programs.
"Many of the residents need the most basic assistance to help themselves and their babies," Tina Magarino said. "This includes driver’s licenses, GEDs, resume preparation, individual and group counseling, parenting classes, cooking classes and instruction on household finances. Our residents are required to either work or volunteer their time. We have a mandatory savings program so many residents leave with the funds to secure an apartment or meet other financial needs."
Birth Haven hopes that current supporters and new friends will view the videos and be inspired to help. The need is great and the support makes an enormous difference in the lives of some young women and their babies that are very vulnerable.
Please help inspire hope during this season of giving and make a difference in the lives of mothers and babies right here in our community.