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As a student empowered by and passionate about the volunteer movement and a regular homeless-food-run organizer/participant at American University, I would like to commend you on a job well done. Laura Lang’s cover story about the National Coalition for the Homeless’ “urban plunge” (Home Free,” 12/17/99) was well-written, poignant, and captivating.

I think it is important for college students like myself to realize how fortunate we are, and programs like NCH’s are just what the doctor ordered.

Although I’m sure the students stuck out like sore thumbs and didn’t exactly blend in with the homeless culture in D.C., I know from personal experience in working with the homeless that their 48 hours on the streets is an event that they will never forget. Not only did it open their eyes as participants, but I’m sure it touched many of your readers.

Once again, thank you for writing such an informative and interesting story.

American University