Youth at Economy Hotel Candler and surrounding areas are being invited to attend this month's Trick-or-Treat event at the Candler on October 31st, hosted by City of Hope Safe Haven, a local non-profit organization.
"There's not much trick-or-treating happening in the neighborhood ever since Covid," explains Alecia Washington, who founded the organization 15 years ago.
Fortunately for Decatur youth, the non-profit holds events for them year-round. In July, for example, they held a back to school drive at the Candler in partnership with St Vincent de Paul, where children were provided with food, book bags, school supplies and clothing.
"It brings a real sense of relief to the parents of these children when they see posters for these events," said Donica Davis, Community Relations Manager. "It's a small thing to us - school supplies, clothes - but huge to them. A lot of them don't even know where their next meal is coming from."
After moving to Atlanta from Chicago in 1999, Washington decided she wanted to start the City of Hope Safe Haven non-profit organization to help families with whom she shared similar experiences, such domestic violence, drug abuse, and homelessness. "I wanted to show them that you can come out of this as a survivor, you don't have to be a victim," said Washington. Her organization aims to help those at risk of becoming homeless; those in transitional stages who need a little support to regain independence.
It made good sense to partner up with Economy Hotel Candler for a lot of their events. Washington first learned about the location and its residents while renting out office space in the Event Hall. "I use the hotel as a point of reference for people seeking emergency shelter," said Washington. "Everyone is familiar with the location, the area is perfect to cater to their needs."
Washington plans to use the Candler's parking lot as a platform for the Halloween event on October 31st, decorated with lots of spooky props. Trick-or-treating will start at 4pm. Remember to wear your costumes!