Pathfinder Community Serves Homeless

Alaska is known for its stunning natural beauty, but for those who lack traditional housing, the extreme winter conditions pose a dangerous threat. Homelessness in Anchorage, the state's most populous city, has surged by 60%, and the number of deaths has reached a record-high of 43 in 2023.

Anchorage Northside Adventist Church, located in the heart of the city, witnessed this struggle firsthand. Seeing the need for action, the church's Pathfinder club decided to take a caring stand. Under the guidance of co-leaders Lia Fanene-Navarro and Laura Jean-Francois, 14 Pathfinders took to the streets on Nov. 18, 2023 to distribute 103 pairs of warm woolen socks to those camping in tents and recreational vehicles.

Assembling gallon-sized zip-lock bags filled with an array of essentials such as socks, gloves, granola bars and candy, the Pathfinders, leaders, staff and parents dispersed throughout the downtown and midtown areas, braving the frigid temperatures to bring warmth and comfort to those in need.

One of the Pathfinders expressed her enthusiasm for the project, saying, "This is fun, Mom. I really enjoy helping others who need help. Can we save one bag of socks and goodies for the lady who lives by the bridge?"

Despite the freezing temperatures, the team's eight warm cars helped keep the Pathfinders on track as they made their way through snowy vacant lots and streets of Anchorage.

As they carried on with their mission, the Pathfinders were reminded of the words of Matt. 25:40, "And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto Me."