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United To End Homelessness Strives To Change The Conversation Surrounding Housing Insecurity During Hunger And Homelessness Awareness Week

United to End Homelessness Strives to Change the Conversation Surrounding Housing Insecurity During Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week

Dynamic schedule of events and educational opportunities throughout November 

Orange County, Calif. (October 25, 2023) – United to End Homelessness℠, an initiative empowered by Orange County United Way, will continue its ongoing efforts to raise awareness and draw attention to the issue of homelessness in Orange County during Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week. The annual program will extend throughout November with a host of events and activities planned with more than 20 partner organizations across the county.

This year’s theme challenges participants to reflect on how the community can be a part of Changing the Conversation About Homelessness in Orange County. The topic will be explored at a variety of education packed events, in-person activities, and virtual discussions planned throughout the month.

“We are honored once again to have the opportunity to further educate community members on the complexities of homelessness with the goal of bringing greater awareness and increased support for those experiencing housing insecurity,” said Becks Heyhoe, Executive Director of United to End Homelessness. “This year’s Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week events extend through the first half of November and were created with the intention to prompt conversation, propel collaboration, and empower involvement amongst the community so that together, we can help bring an end to homelessness in Orange County.”

The following free events and activities are open to participation from the public:

Community Events

Join the conversation by attending any of the in-person and online events and discussions with prominent leaders about various topics related to homelessness in Orange County.

  • #HHWeekOC Economics of Affordability
    • Wednesday, November 8, 2023, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.
    • This virtual event will highlight the economics of affordability, featuring interviews with experts in the field, explore the relationship between affordability and homelessness, and challenge assumptions that limit our ability to find solutions for the entire community.
    • Scheduled speakers include:
      • Henry Gascon, United Ways of California
      • Wallace Walrod, Orange County Business Council
      • Laval Brewer, South County Outreach
    • Register to attend at
  • Mental Health and Homelessness | Community Chat Series
    • Part One
      • Thursday, November 9, 2023, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.
      • Virtual Event
      • Part One will focus on understanding the mental health crisis at a national level and how trend findings relate to communities in Orange County.
      • This event will feature expert remarks from guest speakers including:
        • Cameron Carter, UCI School of Medicine
        • Kevin von Luft, Be Well OC
        • Parisa Mehrinfar, Mental Health Association – Orange County
      • Register to attend at
    • Part Two
      • Thursday, November 16, 2023, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.
      • Virtual Event
      • Part Two will focus on the intersections of homelessness and mental health and address questions like:
        • Do mental health crises cause homelessness or vice versa?
        • How do mental health issues change without housing?
      • This event will feature expert remarks from guest speakers including:
        • Christina Weckerly-Ramirez, Orange County Health Care Agency
        • Kelly Bruno-Nelson, CalOptima Health
      • Register to attend at
    • Part Three
      • Thursday, November 30, 2023, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.
      • Virtual Event
      • Part Three will focus on creating a system of care for mental health and homelessness and look at what is being done in the field to address the needs of people experiencing homelessness with mental health concerns.
      • This event will feature expert remarks from guest speakers including:
        • Heather Stratman, Be Well OC
        • Lisa Row, Orange County Health Care Agency
      • Register to attend at
  • #HHWeekOC Table Talks
    • Orange County residents are invited to connect with neighbors and local advocates in a guided discussion about the misconceptions of homelessness. These regional “Table Talks” provide an opportunity to engage in new conversations that will help lay the groundwork for change and other solutions to end homelessness in the community.
    • A light meal will be available at 5:30 p.m. for registered attendees. The program will begin at 6:00 p.m.
    • South Orange County
      • Monday, November 13, 2023, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
      • Location: Norman P. Murray Community Center, 24932 Veterans Way, Mission Viejo, CA 92692
      • Register to attend at
    • North Orange County
      • Tuesday, November 14, 2023, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
      • Location: First Presbyterian Church, 180 N. Grand Street, Orange, CA 92866
      • Register to attend at


For more information about Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, visit

For more information about United to End Homelessness, visit



Launched in February 2018, United to End Homelessness is led by a diverse group of leaders from Orange County’s top business, philanthropic, governmental, faith-based and nonprofit organizations – all committed to ending homelessness in our community. Our work is grounded in bringing the recommendations of the 2017 UC Irvine study “Homelessness in Orange County: The Costs to Our Community” to life, with Orange County United Way serving as the backbone of this new collaborative effort. Together we are working to bring the issue of homelessness to the forefront of the community’s collective discussion and create civic engagement that will lead to meaningful and lasting results. Together we can and we will #EndHomelessnessOC. For more information, please visit

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Media Contact: Heidi Pallares,, (949) 285-7278

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