Our Open Doors community is saddened at the loss of our beloved Jari Foster Pulford. To honor her memory, and her tireless work fighting for social justice, we are naming the scholarship fund she started and championed the Mary J. Pulford Memorial Scholarship Fund. These funds allow us to help our residents and shelter guests further their education and broaden their horizons. Open Doors, and this scholarship fund, was near and dear to Jari’s heart as she was – and will remain – to ours. Jari, your legacy lives on at Open Doors.
A new event is being planned for November.
Amid rising concerns over the spread of COVID-19, Open Doors Kalamazoo has canceled its annual fundraising event, Discover Open Doors. A new event is being planned for November 2020 that will combine elements of this annual luncheon event with a celebration of the organization’s 50th anniversary.
Open Doors Kalamazoo began in 1970 as Kalamazoo Youth Ministry, a walk-in shelter for homeless youth. Now serving more than 200 people annually, the nonprofit organization has grown to include two shelters, The Open Door Shelter for Men and The Next Door Shelter for Women, and a Residence Community for Working People providing affordable and safe housing for individuals and families who are not able to afford or are otherwise ineligible for market-rate housing.
Open Doors relies heavily on donations from generous individuals, foundations, and the faith community, along with resident program fees, to provide housing and critical personal support in the two shelters and 101 units of housing. Discover Open Doors is the organization’s biggest fundraiser bringing in approximately $100,000 through donations, sponsorships, and matching funds. The event typically draws around 450 attendees.
Executive Director Stephanie Hoffman said that the support received from this event is crucial. “The generous donations we receive at Discover Open Doors are vital in helping provide homes and life-changing personal support to more than 200 of Kalamazoo’s vulnerable community members each year. We do this most valuable work in collaboration with our Kalamazoo community. Having a shelter in place order brings into stark light the importance of having a place to call home, a place where you can keep yourself and your family safe and know that you are cared for and supported. You can help by making a donation today, and by coming to celebrate with us in November.”
The fall event is tentatively scheduled for the evening of November 20.
If you’d like to donate now, you can use this link. Please contact Development Director Stacy Vest with questions or to make donations by phone at 269.205.3285, SVest@ODKzoo.com.
For the month of December, the Open Doors Office will be open Monday through Thursday 9am – 4pm and Fridays, 10am – 4pm.
Additionally, we will be closed on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Years Day.