(L-R) Random Acts Founder and Community Advocate, Misha Collins and Lydia Place Executive Director, Emily O’Connor co-host virtual Hearts for Housing to raise essential funds for families and individuals experiencing homelessness in Whatcom County on Saturday, February 6th, 2021. (Photo by Veritas Media & Studio V)

People across the globe joined hearts to raise essential housing funds for Whatcom County

Bellingham, WA — On Saturday, February 6th, 2021, hearts united from over 50 countries to join Lydia Place and guest host Misha Collins, actor, founder of Random Acts, and community advocate, to raise critical dollars for housing, mental health, and parenting support for hundreds of families in our community at this year’s Hearts for Housing virtual auction and fundraiser. 

Hearts for HousingLydia Place’s largest grossing annual fundraiser and auction, was moved to an online setting due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With over 1,300 guests tuning in from all over the world, this year’s space odyssey theme included a live stream broadcast with Executive Director, Emily O’Connor and guest host Misha Collins, hundreds of silent auction packages, and an exclusive VIP Zoom experience that included goodie bags, appetizers, celebratory drinks, games, and a special Q & A with Collins and O’Connor.  

Last February, before the pandemic, Hearts for Housing’s in-person event had over 500 guests in attendance who helped raise $275,000 for Lydia Place programs and services. Since March of last year, the number of families experiencing homelessness in Whatcom County has more than doubled. In response, Lydia Place has provided 41% more emergency bed nights and increased rental subsidy support to 30% of the families in programsThis year the online event raised $215,000 to continue providing critical services to our neighbors and is available to view on YouTube or at www.heartsforhousing.com 

“We want to say thank you to all the businesses, partners, and individuals that continued to support this event even though times are challenging. From dollars to donations of goods, our local community continues to rally around us and help us support the hundreds of families we serve throughout Whatcom County,” shared Tally Rabatin, Community Engagement Director 

Funds raised by the event will be used to support Lydia Place in the building of their newest campus, Heart House. Heart House is a three-story, mixed-use development consisting of 11 units of one and two-bedroom Permanent Supportive Housing apartments designated for mothers with children experiencing homelessness and will include a licensed daycare facility and community garden. You can learn more about Heart House or donate funds to help support this project, visit: https://lydiaplace.org/hearthouse/ 

Those who could not attend this year’s virtual event on February 6th can still get involved by becoming a Lydia Place Housing Hero. For as little as $5 per month, you can help Lydia Place continue to say “yes” to families in need of emergency housing. For more information or to set-up your recurring gift today, visit www.lydiaplace.org/hero 

All proceeds from Hearts for Housing benefit Lydia Place, a local nonprofit agency working to disrupt the cycle of homelessness for current and future generations. For more information, please visit www.lydiaplace.org