Herald JournalHerald Journal, Dec. 1, 2003

Waverly man sleeps in tent to help homeless

By Liz Hellmann

A modest tent sits outside the front yard of Stan and Lorraine Kittock's home along Highway 12 in Waverly.

The meager shelter is being used by their son, Kevin Kittock, to help raise $1 million for the homeless this year.

Kittock sleeps in the tent on weekends, with no heaters, staying out all night from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Kittock recently joined the fight to help raise money for the homeless by following in the footsteps of his friend, Bob Fisher of Wayzata.

Fisher works with Interfaith Outreach and Community Partners to raise much needed funds for purchasing land and building affordable housing for low-income families.

"Kevin is trying to help out people who don't have a place to live. I'm very proud of him," Lorraine Kittock said of her son.

Kittock began sleeping outside on Nov. 14, and plans to continue sleeping out until the goal is reached.

Currently Interfaith Outreach has raised about 40 percent of its goal.

With 8,600 people homeless every night in Minnesota, half of those being children, there is a great need and opportunity to help the homeless.

"We as people have to do something," Fisher said. "The more Kevins we have around the better."

Many people have joined the cause to help raise money including corporate businesses, Boy Scouts, and the Minnesota Twins.

They are all donating money in response to these two men, and others like them who brave the cold weather and harsh conditions to help get the word out about homelessness.

During the past eight years $2 million have been raised toward the building affordable housing.

The idea of sleeping in a tent outside to raise money and awareness for the homeless started eight years ago for Bob Fisher.

Fisher's goals are:

· to increase awareness about the issue of affordable housing and homelessness.

· to encourage individuals, congregations, businesses, and other community organizations to become actively engaged in the issue of affordable housing.

· to raise $1 million for the housing assistance programs of Interfaith Outreach and Community Partners.

Kittock met Fisher through a mutual friend.

Kittock decided to help Fisher's cause by spreading the word about homelessness in his own hometown community.

Kittock grew up in Waverly and was influenced by teachers who inspired him to make a difference and help others.

"I applaud Kevin, and people like him, who take a stand for something important to them." Fisher said.

To find out more information and how to donate check out the web site www.bobssleepout.com.

To donate, mail check to: IOCP / Bob's Sleep-Out, 110 Grand Ave. S., Wayzata, MN 55391 or call (952) 473-2436, ext. 14.

The organization accepts Visa and Mastercard donations in addition to cash, checks and even stock.


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