Central Pennsylvania artists rallying to help their neighbors facing homelessness
Joy to the Burg wins at the 2023 CPMAs!
Joy to the Burg 2022 is Presented by
in partnership with
Helping the Homeless
"Whoever is generous to the poor, lends to the Lord," Proverbs 19:17
Bringing Joy To The Burg
In 2019, Sheldon Jones was concerned about folks sleeping on the street in downtown Harrisburg. He hatched an idea with some artist friends: make a Christmas album and sell it to help the homeless. Once word got out, the music community rallied around the project that was soon called Joy to the Burg (JTTB) for the benefit of the street outreach work of Christian Churches United (CCU). The first album in 2019 raised enough funds to help CCU open a new women’s winter shelter, and a set a standard for quality music and a diverse array of musical acts across all genres. Sheldon, the musicians, and teams of volunteers partnered with CCU and their street outreach efforts to build on the album in 2020 and 2021, navigating a pandemic in the midst. The results? Over $93,000 raised to support our neighbors facing homelessness in Harrisburg and surrounding communities from 2019-2021. Over 400 people on the street have been provided 6,000+ nights of sleeping in a warm bed with staff support, while 75 people have been assisted to obtain and maintain long-term housing along with other tangible support to folks currently on the street through the work of CCU.
In 2022, the Central Pennsylvania Music Hall of Fame joined Joy to the Burg as our music curation partner...leading to 33 artists and songs on our 2022 digital download album. Also in 2022, we expanded Joy to the Burg to include visual artists, with Susquehanna Art Museum (SAM) coming on board as our artwork curation partner. SAM curated a set of 8 greeting cards with 8 designs from area visual artists to further expand our impact.
When you give the gift of Joy to the Burg, you not only support the local arts community and bless your loved ones with the gift of music, you provide hope and housing to our most vulnerable neighbors. Thank you.
When Hurricane Agnes flooding devastated central Pennsylvania in 1972, churches rallied to do what we hope all churches do…love their neighbor. Several hundred churches joined together to quickly form a flood emergency fund. They ran this fund for years, supporting neighbors as they rebuilt their homes and lives. Through this collaboration, the vision for Christian Churches United was formed and formalized in the late 70’s: for churches to work together on an on-going basis to support their neighbors facing crises or challenges such as poverty, homelessness and incarceration. In 1982, the “Ecumenical Emergency Fund” was transitioned into a permanent walk-in assistance office:
HELP Ministries of CCU. Learn more at www.ccuhbg.org.
Joy to the Burg won Best Brand Identity/Unique Marketing Campaign at the 2021 Nonprofit Innovation Awards Ceremony held by the Central Penn Business Journal in partnership with The Foundation for Enhancing Communities (TFEC), Lancaster County Community Foundation and York County Community Foundation. (Article; Video)
Joy to the Burg 2021 Highlights
TV Special On ABC27 (Watch Now)