Every December, communities across the nation hold candlelight vigils to remember people who died in the past year whose lives were shortened by homelessness. The event typically takes place on the winter solstice, the longest night of the year, to draw awareness to the challenges of being unhoused during the winter. For homeless service providers, people with lived experience, and concerned citizens, the event provides a moment to recognize the collective grief we experience with each loss of life. The event is also an opportunity for a call to action: for more life-saving shelter options and permanent affordable housing.
Junction Arts & Media (JAM) created a video of the candlelight vigil sponsored by Upper Valley Haven, City of Lebanon, Dartmouth Health, LISTEN, Headrest, and Doorways Into Good Shelter held on December 21, 2023. "On the darkest night of the year, the Winter Solstice, people gathered at Listen in White River to remember community members who died in 2023 and whose lives were shortened due to homelessness. Speakers took turns reading the names and telling about each of the 21 people who lost their lives. Other speakers also included Becca White, Simon Dennis and Pastor John Gregory-Davis. Following the vigil, volunteers camped out overnight to show solidarity with the area's homeless population."