My husband and I spent our relaxing birthday weekend in midtown Manhattan, and I slid into the habit of window shopping at the modern furniture and lighting stores on Madison Avenue.

These are the stores where the price of a single table lamp — on sale — could sponsor a family of four for two weeks in our Family Promise North Shore Boston program.

Then I thought about the cost of our discounted room. I thought about our theater tickets for the evening’s performance. Did it make sense?It’s hard to rationalize spending on yourself when there are so many people in need. In need and homeless in our own backyard on the beautiful North Shore of Boston.

There are tremendous socioeconomic imbalances in the country that extend far beyond hotel rooms, home lighting and a night at the theater. Seeing the homeless sleeping outside the multimillion-dollar apartment buildings in New York, and knowing the faces of the people who can’t find a reasonable apartment or affordable housing at home on the North Shore, only reinforces for me how far we still have to go.Luckily, we have Family Promise to help.

This week we begin work on our 2nd Annual Cardboard Box City. Our goal is to build on the fundraising success we had last year and to leave people and their families with a greater personal understanding of the challenges facing homeless families in our own neighborhoods.

Please consider joining the committee, sponsoring a participant or team, or making a generous donation to help us in our quest to end homelessness, one family at a time.

Why? Because it’s the right thing to do. And it is within our grasp.

Love and light to all.

Linda Goodspeed has been a passionate board member of Family Promise North Shore Boston since 2016. She can be reached at