Family Promise is an organization that has helped families in need for 20 years throughout the country. Groups of 10-13 churches form an Interfaith Hospitality Network (IHN) to help homeless families. IHNs are currently active in 39 states and the District of Columbia in large cities, suburbs, and rural counties. They mobilize community resources: houses of worship for lodging and volunteers, social service agencies for assessment and referrals, and existing facilities for day programs. This strategy enables the networks to help homeless families achieve lasting independence at a third of the cost of traditional shelters.
There are five key components in each IHN.
1. Hosts (11 Collin County congregations – see below)
2. Volunteers – might this be you?
3. Day Center (Generously provided by the City of Lucas – the old municipal building)
4. Social Service Agencies
5. Transportation (Family Promise of Collin County has the van and trailer ready to go)
Nationally, 80 percent of the families served by IHNs go on to long-term housing. In 2007, Family Promise affiliates served more than 31,000 children and adults and involved more than 120,000 volunteers in 5,000 congregations, according to the Family Promise website.
In addition to FirstChurch, member churches in the Collin County IHN include Creekwood United Methodist Church (Allen), Forest Grove Christian Church (Lucas), West Plano Presbyterian Church (Plano), Grace Presbyterian Church (Plano), Trinity Presbyterian Church (McKinney), Custer Road United Methodist Church (Plano), First Christian Church (McKinney), Stonebridge United Methodist Church (McKinney), Friendship Baptist church (Fairview) and Rockbridge Church (Allen). Currently there are several other churches undergoing the approval process to become a part of this network.
If you are interested in learning more about Family Promise of Collin County or volunteering to help, please contact or visit familypromiseofcollincounty.org.