How One Mom's Tweet Helped Find 500 March For Our Lives Protesters Places To Stay

March for Our Lives Lodging is connecting visitors needing a room with residents who have spare space.

It all started with a tweet. Elizabeth Andrews, a mom who lives in the D.C. area, sent a post to her 28 Twitter followers that she would be willing to help find places to stay for out-of-town students coming to Washington, D.C. for the March for Our Lives this weekend. Now, as thousands are expected to gather in the capital and in other cities across the country, Andrews and 10 of her friends have matched hundreds of visitors with places to stay post-protest

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Andrews, who told the Washington Post that she never even volunteered to lead a committee of the PTA at her daughter's school before, said she was "overwhelmed" by the initial response to her tweet. Within two hours, her post had received over a thousand likes, and Andrews realized that she had tapped into an urgent need of the upcoming protest.

Many of the attendees of the March For Our Lives, organized by survivors of the school shooting in Parkland, Fla. last month, are expected to be students. Individuals under the age of 18 are unable to book rooms at hotels or through Airbnb. For those who could book a room, the cost could be an issue. 

"I felt like I really had to do something. I could never live with myself if I didn't do something," Andrews told CNN.

Fueled by the initial response, Andrews contacted her friends who decided to create an official organization that would match those coming into D.C. with residents willing to offer up space in their homes. Called March for Our Lives Lodging, the group has paired more than 500 people and created a database of over 1,600 people willing to house strangers. 

March for Our Lives Lodging called and checked the social media of everyone who applied to either be a host or a guest. Anyone under the age of 18 was required to have parental consent to participate. 

"A lot of these kids are minors who have no adults coming, whose moms are putting them on a bus or a plane, and we want to make sure we place them in a home where they feel like they're going to be taken care of," Julie Stewart, one of the people involved, told The Washington Post. "Part of it is coming from me because I'm a mom, and I do what I'd like done for my kids in terms of safety."

Students protest outside Brooklyn's Edward R. Murrow high school as part of the National School Walkout March 14. Katie Ward / A Plus

The group's goal has caught on with other organizations. Students from George Washington University are opening up their dorm rooms to other college students. Churches and synagogues in the area are using their communities to find people places to stay. 

More than anything, March for Our Lives Lodging is hoping to remove any barriers from those who want to attend the rally. 

"We're moms and it's natural for us to help kids to address their logistics challenges and their other challenges, so it was a natural place for us to contribute," co-founder Deanna Troust told CNN. "I think moms are pretty good at recognizing it's not about us, which is a critical part of our effort. Moms are just here to help."

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