ATLANTA – (October 25, 2017) – Featuring headlining appearances by Academy Award-winning actors Renee Zellweger and Jon Voight, a luncheon today at the Georgia World Congress Center sought to raise awareness of Atlanta’s homeless population.
“Most of us know about and care for the homeless, we just don’t know how to help,” said David Smith, founder of Carry the Torch, an organization that aims to bridge that gap by connecting people that want to help with a plethora of organizations that administer to the needs of the local homeless populace. According to Atlanta Mission, a nonprofit serving local homeless men, women, and children, there are approximately 7,000 homeless people in metro Atlanta, including 2,000 that live on the streets and don’t spend the night in local shelters, along with a growing number of homeless families.
Carry the Torch is trying to raise $1 million for agencies that serve Atlanta’s homeless population. The luncheon fundraiser also promoted Zellweger and Voight’s new film “Same Kind of Different As Me,” based on the book about the relationship between Ron Hall, a former international art dealer, Hall’s wife Deborah, and Denver Moore, a former homeless-man-turned-activist. Hall and Moore co-authored the book. In the movie, which was released Oct. 20, Voight portrays Hall’s father and Zellweger plays Deborah Hall.
After reading “Same Kind of Different As Me” (he received two copies on the same day), Smith he was inspired to be an advocate for Atlanta’s homeless. The program featured guest speakers Jack Hardin, co-chair of the Regional Commission on Homelessness, and Hall, as well as a panel discussion with Zellweger and “Same Kind of Different As Me’’ producer/director Michael Carney, moderated by TV journalist/host Julie Moran. Attendees also had the opportunity to browse and connect with local advocacy groups to learn about real solutions for the homeless in Atlanta.
For more information about Carry the Torch, visit carrythetorchatlanta2017.com.