Maslow's Army throwing birthday party for people experiencing homelessness

Posted at 4:30 AM, Apr 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-27 07:40:40-04

CINCINNATI -- It has taken time and volunteers to wrap hundreds of birthday presents for the party planned for this weekend on Fountain Square.

Samuel and Susan Landis with Maslow's Army want to give people experiencing homelessness in Cincinnati a birthday celebration this Sunday. 

"Living on the streets during their birthday, it's just another day for them to try to survive and get by," Samuel Landis said. 

He said they hope to make the celebration special and personal for those being celebrated.

"We're going to sing 'Happy Birthday' before we send everybody through the line," he said.

It's also a special day because Sunday is Susan Landis' mom's birthday. She died in November.

"Even though Sunday is going to be a sad day, it's going to be a happy day because there's going to be people out there that get to experience a birthday party for them," Susan Landis said.

Maslow's Army has been using Fountain Square as its base to serve hundreds of people experiencing homelessness every Sunday. They've offered meals, toiletries and other help for 66 consecutive Sundays.

Now they're looking to expand. Samuel Landis said they want to find a daytime center they can operate out of.

"We've been operating on our phones and out of a storage locker now since October 2016," he said.

They're hoping to get help from the city. For now, they get lots of help from student volunteers.

"Sometimes I feel like they probably forget they have a birthday, because nobody recognizes it," volunteer Carolyn Downing said.

But this year, somebody will recognize their birthdays.

"What I can do from this point on is make sure that individuals that are out there get the holidays that they need," Susan Landis said.

You can visit Maslow's Army's website if you're interested in volunteering or making a contribution.