Good News in Advent

4 12 2008

Here’s a great blog post from The Caucus, the NYTimes politics / US blog.  You may read the whole thing here

Apparently, someone in Virginia is helping some folks witness the Inauguration of Barack Obama in DC in January by giving them an all-expense paid weekend in Washington.

Recipients will be those who are down on their luck, veterans, battered women, and the terminally ill.

A Virginia businessman has purchased a $1 million inaugural package at the JW Marriott in Washington. The package comes with 300 rooms, four suites, $200,000 in food and beverages, and a heated tent atop the hotel from which to view the inaugural parade down Pennsylvania Avenue. He is also adding $600,000 worth of breakfasts and inaugural balls. (The extravaganza does not include one of the most precious commodities in Washington — tickets to the swearing-in.)

Read more below the fold ….

The businessman, Earl W. Stafford, 60, of Fairfax County, announced his plans this morning in Washington at a news conference that was simulcast on the Web. He is the founder of a technology company that provides weapons simulation systems to the military. The project is being funded through his family’s Stafford Foundation, a faith-based nonprofit organization that helps the under-served.

He said he was “led” to the idea by the Lord, although when it first occurred to him in March, he said, it wasn’t fully crystallized. He said he wanted to help people who have worked hard and done everything right but who find themselves without a job or home.

“The hope is that this will be contagious, that others will say, ‘I can do a little good, I might not be able to hold an inaugural ball or celebration, but I can do something for my neighbor without condition, without return,’” he said.

The beneficiaries have yet to be selected. There are no details yet, but Mr. Stafford wants them to represent a cross-section of society and to come from across the country, from suburbs to slums.

With the help of organizations like the National Urban League, he is reaching out to hospitals, homeless shelters and other social agencies to find those who are under-served but who also represent hope and change. Afterward, he said, he hopes his guests will go out and help others.

Nice, huh?




One response

5 12 2008

Can I put my name down?

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