Imagine it's a bitterly cold day. You've been walking around for hours with all your earthly possessions stuffed into a backpack, which seems to get heavier with every step. Steps that are increasingly difficult because your shoes are so worn out and ill-fitting.

Your simple wish is somewhere warm to stop for a while, something warm to drink and perhaps, a safe place to lay your head for a night or two.

For many people, this isn't something they need to imagine, this is their reality, here in Sioux Falls, right now. St. Francis House, an ecumenical ministry-based homeless shelter in Sioux Falls, is well aware of this and year-round, actively seeks to raise awareness of, and address the problem.

For the third year during National Hunger and Homelessness Week (November 16 2-4), St. Francis House invites people to "walk the walk", by participating in their "Walk a Mile in My Shoes" event on Saturday, November 23.

Registration is from 10:30 to 11 AM. There will then be a short program, after which, the walk to the St. Francis House will begin at the memorial for the homeless, located at 6th Street and the Big Sioux River (behind the Lutheran Social Services building).

Participants are asked to bring a new or gently-used backpack filled with 15 pounds of canned foods, socks, thermals, gloves, knit hats, etc., to donate to St. Francis House residents at the end of the walk. This symbolizes the many guests who have arrived there with nothing more than a backpack and badly worn-out shoes.

You can register for the walk online and for more information, see St. Francis House online, on Facebook or call 605-413-7946.


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