By Jennifer Sattler, Voice Reporter
Seeing a homeless young mother and her two children drove local singer Julianne to write award winning lyrics. Local singer and songwriter Julianne placed first in the Great Lakes International 2009 songwriting competition.
"No Place For A Lullabye," placed first and is getting a lot of media attention. Detroit's WXYZ-TV news anchor Stephen Clark directed the song's video, her first.
Last winter the sight of a young mother and her two children living in the backseat of a Chevy was more than Julianne could bear.
"The homeless person is not the aging, white-haired male we all perceive. It's now women and children. I encountered a single mom living in her car with her two children," Julianne said. "My friends and I had been talking online about how hard times are for everyone. Soon after we talked, I saw this young mother of two living in an old Chevy.
"I wrote the song in January, left it for a little while, and finished it in February. By spring, Stephen Clark produced the video. Port Huron and surrounding cities really showed their support when they came out to the Home-Aid Concert and 'Lullabye' video release," Julianne said.
The concert generated $4,454 for Safe Horizons, a local non-profit combating domestic violence, sexual assault and homelessness.
"It was pretty exciting, I feel very happy that this brought the community together for those who are less fortunate," she said.
Her newly released compact disc "It Ain't Over," is a compilation of four tunes focusing on domestic violence and homelessness. Julianne's compassion is ongoing. The video is currently being considered by a national organization.
"I did it for many reasons. I am a single mother and while I have a great job I do struggle at times," Julianne said.
The video was produced with the intent of bringing awareness of homeless families and shelters where women can go for help in a situation that seems hopeless. It depicts a young woman sharing a toaster pastry with her two children living on the street in an old Chevy.
"This Chevy ain't no place for a mom to sing a lullaby" is one of the song's verses.
Times are tough all over.
"With the downs come a lot of ups," Safe Horizons agency administrator Sharon Gerald said.
According to Gerald, in 2008 Safe Horizons' staffers answered 1,647 crisis line calls for crisis intervention, emergency housing, safety planning, support and information. Pathway Shelter received 821 calls for assistance. Pathway Shelter provided 9,366 nights of stay. Carolyn's Place provided 8,673 nights of stay with a combined total of 18,039 nights of stay.
Safe Horizons provided shelter services for 514 adults and 202 children.
According to St. Clair County officials, the jobless rate has now climbed to 18.10 percent. Officials report a recent negative job growth as St. Clair County jobs have decreased by 9.60 percent.
The demand for Safe Horizon services is impacted by the economy.
"If you or someone you know is in crisis, we have a 24-hour crisis line 1-888-985-5538. If it's a housing issue, call the First Call for Help Hotline 810-985-7161," Gerald said.
The Voice article