Hope Starts Here – Paula Robertson tells us how

The caring team of St. Matthew’s House and those who support them in their work participate in fostering and witnessing miracles each and every day. St. Matthew’s House provides hope and help to individuals and families facing some of life’s harshest realities and challenges.

For 32 years, St. Matthew’s House has been providing comfort, shelter, resources and guidance that truly touch the hearts and transform the lives of those struggling with homelessness, chronic hunger and addiction. Whether helping a homeless elderly woman with food and shelter; providing the opportunity for recovery to a young athlete who became addicted to opioids after sustaining a serious sports injury; or providing food staples to a low income family…hope truly does start here.

St. Matthew’s House operates the only facility approved for public feeding and the only emergency homeless shelters in Collier County. Since its founding, St. Matthew’s House has never missed a day of feeding the hungry, providing more than 500,000 meals each year, and sheltering more than 300 men, women and children every night. And the public can help in this life transforming work through donations, patronizing St. Matthew’s House social enterprises and supporting fundraising events.

St. Matthew’s House generates revenue for its operations through a unique Social Enterprise Model that includes five thrift stores, a car wash and detailing center, catering operation and more. “Our social enterprises generate nearly 70 percent of the funds needed for St. Matthew’s House operations so that 100 percent of every donation goes directly to support our life transforming programs and services,” notes St. Matthew’s House President and CEO Vann Ellison.

St. Matthew’s House also receives support from two major annual events. The 16th Annual Cars on 5th, organized by the Naples Chapter of the Ferrari Club of America, takes place on 5th Avenue South in downtown Naples on Saturday, February 8, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. This wildly popular event will feature approximately 600 cars, including 125 Ferraris and other exotic, vintage, muscle and other cars. VIP tickets are $50, and general admission is $20 for those over 12. Wristbands are required. Tickets can be purchased at stmatthewshouse.org/cars2020.

According to Reverend Ellison, “Cars on 5th has become a highlight of our community, and is our largest fundraising event. We are truly grateful to the Ferrari Club of America and our event sponsors for their tremendous support of St. Matthew’s House, and to Mayor Bill Barnett and our city leaders who make it possible for us to present this event in downtown Naples.”

In addition, the St. Matthew’s House 23rd Annual Dean Lind Memorial Golf Classic takes place on Monday, April 27, at Kensington Golf & Country Club. This event is one of the longest-running charity golf outings in Southwest Florida. Cost of participation is $1,000 per person. Every dollar raised goes directly to support the men, women and children in the care of St. Matthew’s House. Sponsorships are available. For tickets and information, visit stmatthewshouse.org or contact Nick Porter at (239) 774-0500, extension 161.

St. Matthew’s House is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that does not solicit government funding. The public is invited to participate in “patronage with a purpose” by visiting St. Matthew’s House thrift stores, Café M25 and other social enterprises. For additional information on how you can support St. Matthew’s House in fulfilling its mission to help those in need to realize fuller and more productive lives, visit online at www.stmatthewshouse.org or call (239) 774-0500.

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