Canvassing Tips

Our Shelter Sunday canvassing goals have changed with the addition of our pre-event mailing. Canvassers are now our Shelter Sunday Ambassadors. As such, you make sure that the resident has received the mailing. If they have not, you will have extra mailers with you. Then, ask them if they have any questions about Shelter Sunday or the agencies involved. Lastly, ask if they have already mailed in their donation. If not, offer them the opportunity to donate to you directly.

Pretty simple! Here are a couple of examples.

“Hi.  I’m going around the neighborhood talking to folks about Shelter Sunday which benefits four different organizations that serve the hungry and the homeless in our area. Did you receive the mailing that we sent before the event? Can I answer any questions about Shelter Sunday?  Did you send in your donation already? Or would you like to donate to me today?”  And of course a big thank you for their time and their generosity!

Be prepared to answer basic questions the potential donor may have.  Some FAQ are:

Which agencies benefit?
This year the agencies that benefit are Grove Street Inn, Interfaith Emergency Shelter, the MANNA Soup Kitchen, and the Single Room Occupancy Project.

How much money is raised each year?
Our goal is to raise over $50,000.  Last year, we reached our goal, and this, our 27th year, we hope to pass it.

I don’t have any money today, but can I send a donation somewhere next week?
Absolutely.  Did you receive our pre-event mailing? I have extra if you did not. Simply mail it at your earliest convenience.  Or you can donate online at

How many homeless people are in Northampton?
Each year there are hundreds of individuals and families served by the participating agencies.  The number of people needing these important services grows each year, which is why Shelter Sunday is so important and has been going strong for 26 years!

I would like to help next year.  How do I go about doing that?
We’d love to have you get involved next year.  Please call Anne White at 413-582-9508 or email and let her know you’re interested.  

I already made a Shelter Sunday donation this year.  Didn’t they receive it?
I’m sure they did, and thank you very much.  Your generosity makes a real difference in the lives of the hungry and homeless in our community.