Cambridge’s Safer Homes, Safer Community gun event gift cards are raising a record number of unwanted firearms

A record 245 unwanted weapons were safely surrendered at the seventh annual Cambridge Safer Homes, Safer Community Gift Cards for Guns event on Saturday 11th June at Reservoir Church and Margaret Fuller House. The firearms surrendered included pistols, revolvers, shotguns, rifles, BB guns that appeared to be 9mm pistols, and a toy gun. Residents from Cambridge and far-flung New Hampshire also brought ammunition and various gun parts. This year’s turnout surpassed last year’s record of more than 150 guns collected. Public safety officers and community volunteers have now collected more than 560 firearms at events in Cambridge, handed out gun safety locks and shared extensive information on suicide prevention and gun safety.

The Cambridge Gift Cards for Guns – part of the city‘s initiative to reduce home accidental injuries and the risk of suicide, domestic violence and street crime – are a collaboration between the City of Cambridge, the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office and more than 60 faiths – and community-based organizations and businesses. Since 2013, the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office has assisted 15 towns and cities across the county and more than 1,890 unwanted guns have been turned in.

For Cambridge residents who were unable to attend last weekend and still wish to dispose of unwanted guns in their homes, please contact 617-349-6009. Appointments scheduled through Thursday, June 30, 2022 are still eligible for $50-$200 in grocery vouchers.

Attendees cited a variety of reasons for attending this year’s event. A father said that after witnessing the recent shootings across the country, he wanted to make sure his son didn’t have access to a firearm in his home. A widow said she found a gun in a bag while clearing out her late husband’s belongings and wanted it removed from her home. An elderly man said he had owned a pistol for decades but never used it and would certainly have it destroyed.

In all, more than 60 organizations helped make this weekend’s events possible through planning, participation, support and donations. The following Cambridge interfaith organizations and church partners have collaborated on this important initiative: A Place to Heal Ministries, Abundant Life Church, Calvary Praise and Worship Center, Cambridgeport Baptist Church, Cambridge Community Fellowship Church, Christian Mission Holiness Church, Congregation Eitz Chayim, Christ Church , First Baptist Church, First Church in Cambridge Congregational, First Parish Cambridge, Friends Meeting Cambridge, Harvard Epworth United Methodist Church, Harvard Memorial Church, Islamic Society of Boston (ISB Cambridge), Journey Church, Kingdom Empowerment Center, Massachusetts Avenue Baptist Church , Saint Paul Parish, Pentecostal Tabernacle, Reservoir Church, Rush AME Zion Church, Salvation Army, Cambridge Citadel, St James Episcopal Church, St Paul African Methodist Episcopal Church, St Peter’s Episcopal Church, Temple Beth Shalom, Union Baptist Church, Western Avenue Baptist Church, Cambridge Community Foundation, Cambri dge Community Center, Cambridge Women’s Center, Cambridge YWCA, Community Art Center, East End House, Many Helping Hands, Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House, My Brother’s Keeper Cambridge, Cambridge Chamber of Commerce, The Loop Lab, Transition House, Tutoring Plus, YWCA Cambridge, CambridgeSide , Central Square BID, Harvard Square Business Association, Middle East Restaurant, Pemberton Market, Star Market/Shaw’s, Toscanini’s, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods Market, Cambridge Arts Council, Cambridge Council on Aging, Cambridge Domestic & Gender-Based Violence Prevention Initiative, Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge Human Service Programs, Cambridge Peace Commission, Cambridge Police Department, Cambridge Public Health Department, Cambridge Public Works, Cambridge Veterans Services, The Office of Massachusetts State Representative Marjorie Decker, Massachusetts State Police and the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office .

For more information on the Cambridge Safer Homes, Safer Community initiative go to camb.ma/GiftCardsforGuns. If you or your organization are interested in getting involved with a future event (e.g., donate gift certificates, volunteer at the event, or help release flyers leading up to an event), or if you are in live in a community that may be interested in submitting a request. Please email Lori Lander at Many Helping Hands ([email protected]), Jeremy Warnick of the Cambridge Police Department ([email protected]) or Kevin Maccioli of the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office ([email protected]).

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