Source: Houston Chronicle
Family Promise of Lake Houston is on a path to a new building and a bigger impact on the community.
The Lake Houston area nonprofit hosted its “Promise House” groundbreaking ceremony on Dec. 11 for a 5,800-square-foot building near the intersection of FM 1960 and Wilson Road in Humble. The new facility is expected to open in August 2020 and is being funded through an ongoing $1.25 million capitol campaign.
Carole Brady, executive director of HomeAid Houston and the former director of Family Promise of Lake Houston for 23 years, said there will be a lot of tears the day it opens because of the positive impact a larger space and more services will have on impoverished families in the Lake Houston area. The non-profit currently runs its day time activities from a 900-square-foot house in downtown Humble, said Jessica Penney, executive director for Family Promise of Lake Houston.
“I know the impact it will have on the generations to come… this will be a place that families can recover and have hope for the future. And the community will have an access to fast track GEDs and a number of programs we weren’t able to offer due to space constraints. We wouldn’t even be able to serve them, and now they’re going to get to. So for me, the day they cut that ribbon will be a day I cry, and I am just so unbelievably grateful.”
More space, programs
Family Promise of Lake Houston is a local non-profit serving as a self-sufficiency transition program for families with children. Family Promise works both as a community-based shelter program and as outreach support management for low-income families that become homeless due to an unfortunate circumstance, such as a fire, flood, the death of a spouse, loss of a job, an eviction, or a foreclosure of a home.
Brady said the nonprofit has always wanted to expand its outreach support services. Family Promise finally got the opportunity when Lamb of God Lutheran Church sold them the land for the new Promise House, Brady said.
The new facility will allow the nonprofit more space to offer one-on-one counseling, life skills — such as cooking classes — a GED fast track program, parenting classes and tutoring. Additionally, Penney said the space will have a prayer garden, a play area, a dog and cat condo sponsored by Petsmart and a full teaching kitchen. Family Promise is one of the few nonprofits that allows families to bring pets along with them, she said.
“This building will open the door for us to be able to provide services and support to exponentially more families in our community,” Penney said. “Right now we’re so limited by the size of our day center, which is a 900 square foot house in downtown Humble. This is going to [be] five times more space for families to use and for us to open classes, launch new programs, all that kind of stuff. So we’re really excited to be able to expand the reach.”
Family Promise of Lake Houston still has about $630,000 to raise to complete the home. The campaign has already brought in about $620,000. They do not take money from federal or state funds, so the non-profit collects donations from the community, according to Brady.
Dave Barnhart, home building division president for First America Homes, looks forward to the opportunity to build the Promise Home. Barnhart said HomeAid sets the project structure up, but First America Homes reaches out through their vendors and contractors who donate materials and labor to help with costs.
“This is an incredible charity, and we’ve been very blessed and we’re happy to have the opportunity to give back to them and support the families,” Barnhart said.
Letters were presented to Penney by representatives from Houston Council member Dave Martin as well as Congressman Dan Crenshaw and Kevin Brady. Heather Washburn, district director for Congressman Kevin Brady, said she has listened to recorded stories of the families that are supported through Family Promise who are empowered to work on their own through the non-profit’s system and applauded those working together to build the new house.
“Just seeing what they do together, I think it is incredible — working together for those in Kingwood,” Washburn said. “There’s a lot of hardship that had come out of Kingwood with the different flooding and the different issues that families have been hit with here.”
For information on the Promise Home or Family Promise of Lake Houston, visit fplh.org/