About Tent City

Tent City – 1Matters Project Connect 2014

Save the Dates: October 24, 25, 26

Want to help plan this year’s event?  Then please do!

Meetings are every third Thursday of the month, 7 PM, at the Red Cross HQ, 3100 W. Central.

Click here for up to the minute Tent City updates on Facebook.

Introduction to Tent City video.  This is the “Why.”

Click Here to share this video with your class or group or friends.

  • We are creating several unique avenues of engagement for college students, Jr. and Sr. high school students, youth groups, churches, life groups, and business. Contact us for more information.

  • Want to help provide a snack, a meal, id’s, or part of the event? To donate online click right here.

  • UT and BG students: Student groups at each campus are working on getting buses at each campus to bring students to the walk and dinner Friday night, October 25th. Contact us and we will connect you with your campus Tent City leaders.

  • This year’s 1Mile Matters walk is led by formerly unhoused veterans housed by our Veterans Matter program.  They want to fight for the homes for others…again.  Join them and start your team now. 

  • This video by our good friend Dave Yonke with Toledo Favs (Faith and Values) captured last years rain soaked walk.  It let up midway and blessed us with a beautiful double rainbow at the end.  Click here to see the video, and click above to join us this year.


What is 1Matters Tent City?

If you are new, here are some behind the scenes perspectives of the life changing impact.

Michele Ross is our friend in the Tent City video above.  Kate Giammarise captured her story in this wonderful piece.

Our friend Sarah Ottney accurately penned this story in the Toledo Free Press.

Our friend Tom Henry described it perfectly as “Volunteers connect face-to-face with the homeless through music, coffee, and outreach programs from free haircuts to free medical exams.”

Want to educate your students? Jenifer Christiaanse brought 18 or so students down to spend the night in order to teach them the harder life lessons only discomfort can teach. 

For us, the volunteer leadership who spend the weekend, Jenifer and her group are heroes not only for coming down, but for the commitment to stay when other groups left after the Levee breaks.

Whether you are a leader, thinker, doer, or donor, we want YOU to help us change the world, 1 at a time.

Feel called to help or need more info? You can either email us, call us, or come to any planning meeting.


Here is a Preview of what a Tent City Weekend looks like:


PLEASE Help Get the Word Out – The Solution is Community Collaboration Leverage

You can change lives too. Please link our videos EVERYWHERE you can. Your Facebook, Twitter, Websites, Everywhere that Matters.

To help others see what you see, you can also play the videos in your class, youth group, church, fraternal organization or any other group!

We believe even 1 child, 1 family, or 1 individual living in a car, on a street, or in a shelter is 1 to many. Every 1 Matters! Right? Right!

Who cares? Our Tent City – Project Connect partners include : Every progressive shelter and service provider, Mercy Health Partners*, Promedica Health System, Cherry Street Mission Ministries*, Mildred Bayer Clinic for the Homeless*, the Veterans Administration*, United Way*, Food For Thought, ADAMS House, First Solar, ABLE*, The Anderson’s, City of Toledo Police*, Fire* and Administration*, Toledo City Council*, Toledo Mayor’s Office*, Toledo departments of Parks & Recreation and Neighborhoods*, Lucas County Sheriff*, Lucas County Commissioners*, all suburban fire stations, nearly all of the local media*, local music scene*, 30 plus restaurants, and more.

Partners denoted by an asterisk (*) have been with us for all 24 years!

Among the services provided by these collaborations are basic medical and dental care, medical testing and screening, information to find readily available housing for homeless youths, veterans services, jobs, housing, food and clothing, meals, critical documents, legal aid, haircuts, showers, smoke detectors, blankets, personal care kits, auto repair, and on-site child care enabling parents to access our services.  (One of the coolest is the haircuts!  People come out beaming and an inch taller.)

Tent City is this remarkable life changing experience for both guests and volunteers.

Seriously, join us.


Dignity 1st – 1Matters

This is our finite, single focus; everything else flows from this. Dignity First!

In point of fact, we have no “clients,” as such. From the moment our treasured “guests” get to the Project Connect, they meet their volunteer personal guides who identify and escort them to the services needed, every single contact with the guest is uplifting and designed to make them know they matter, that every 1 matters!

Perhaps most importantly, 1Matters Tent City and Project Connect has had powerful, emotional, lasting impacts on guests, volunteers and service providers. We have seen guests in tears of gratitude, volunteers shocked yet enlightened upon seeing poverty for the first time, and even jaded case managers refreshed with the focus on the customer FIRST.  One case manager with 20 years of service came up to us and said, “Thank you for reminding me why I got into this business in the first place.”

We believe this with all our heart: even 1 child, 1 family, or 1 individual living in any car, on any street, and in any shelter is 1 too many.

If you feel called to this movement of compassion, this momentum, and want to help, lead, give, partner, or sponsor, just come to a meeting, call us, or emails us.   We will help you answer that call.

Every 1 Matters, you can too.