Family Promise: Volunteers Needed

What does it mean to be a ‘host church’ for Family Promise?

It seems that we hear a lot about the Family Promise program, but many are unaware that 4 times a year we have the privilege of being a "Host Church". Host churches provide a week of lodging, meals and activities for families with children who have been accepted by the Family Promise Program. Volunteers convert rooms in the Family Life Center into sleeping quarters, activity areas, and dining areas. Teams of volunteers keep the families company each evening, others provide dinner, and another group stays overnight in the Family Life Center. We also have a team that wash linens.

We are thankful for our many volunteers who have been involved in making Family Promise possible on the VPC campus; however, a large number of our volunteers are seasonal members. We are in desperate need of more year-round members to become involved in this ministry during our upcoming August and September commitments.

Mission of Family Promise

Family Promise is an organization that helps people with children who have lost their housing. By assisting families with their housing needs for a period of time, the program gives a hand up to these families by educating parents to better manage their finances and create a more stable lifestyle. If they have lost their job they assist them in finding employment or better jobs. While they are in the program the families save money to pay first, last, and deposits for their future homes. While the families stay on local church campuses they are enabled to save money to be out in front of their bills as they grow to be financially educated and independent. The Family Promise staff is committed to come alongside the families for 2 years, even after they are in their new rental home to create firmly established, successful family units.

Volunteer Opportunities

Upcoming Family Promise dates at VPC are: September 8th-15th.

Set-up Team led by Will & Diana Bernstein

Being a team member involves:   

  • Set up the rooms in the Family Life Center and arrange them to fit the needs of the guest families. 

  • Set up tables and chairs in the kitchen area.

  • Break down the rooms in the Family Life Center.   

The day of set-up, we arrive after church service and take about an hour to set-up.  On the day of tear-down, we arrive one and 1/2 hours before the church service so that the cots are put into the trailer which is located outside before the service begins. 

We arrange the various rooms in the Family Life Center to fit the needs of our guest families.  We provide cribs, changing tables, cots, mattress pads, fresh sheets, pillow cases, blankets, towels, soap, night lights, lamps, clocks, emergency flashlights, etc.  We also set up tables and chairs in the kitchen area where they eat. 

Food & Mealtime Team led by Bobbie Gilbert & Bonnie Parlette

Being a team member involves:

  • The Food & Mealtime Team is lead by Bobbie Gilbert & Bonnie Parlette.

  • Making or purchasing a child friendly nutritious evening meal.  Deliver to the FamilyLife Center by 6:00 p.m.

  • This may be done by one individual or you may form your own group to prepare this meal    

Evening Host Team led by Judy Edmonds.

Being a team member involves:

  • Set out the food that the Food & Mealtime Team brings at 5:50-6:00.

  • Welcome the families at the door.

  • Begin mealtime with a prayer of thanksgiving.

  • Eat and enjoy conversation with the families and clean up after dinner.

  • Wait for the overnight team to arrive at 8:30.

Our teams serve as hosts from 5:30 to 8:30. The food usually is delivered between 5:30 and 6:00. We set it out buffet style on the kitchen counter. We wait by the front door to welcome the families usually around 6:00. They go to their respective rooms and wash up for dinner. When all are seated we say a prayer of thanks, eat with them and enjoy some conversation. After cleaning up, they either go to their rooms or the activity room, depending on the children's ages. By 7:30 or 8:00, most are in bed.  We then wait for the overnighter team to arrive at 8:30. 

Activities Team led by Sheryl Morford and Bob Jelenchick

Being a team member involves:

  • Set up games, books, crafts, movies, etc. after church on the first Sunday.

  • May participate on a special event night.

The Family Promise Family Room at Venice Presbyterian Church is an area for children to gather in play and activities.  The Activities Team sets up after church on the Sunday they arrive. Games, books, crafts, movies and snacks are available for their enjoyment and supervised by their parents.  A Friday Night Special Event might include, a movie and popcorn or a family game night.  The area is open and monitored by the evening host team.    

Overnight Sleeper Team led by Kathy Wood 

Being a team member involves:

Evening:

  • Arrive at 8:30 p.m. and stay overnight in a private room.

  • Find out what time the families will be getting up to get ready for their day and set our alarm accordingly.

Morning:

  • Parents make breakfast & lunches for their family and leave at 7:30 a.m.

  • Strip your bed and put linens in the laundry basket provided in your room.

  • Wipe down the kitchen area and take the garbage to the dumpster.

  • Lock the front door and exit by the side door.

Stay overnight in a private room in the Family Life Center with a spouse, family member or friend, arriving at 8:30 p.m. Twin beds, sheets, blankets, hand towels, wash cloths, lamp and alarm clock are provided.  Bring your own pillow and whatever else will make you comfortable for the night.  Set your alarm based on the time families tell you they will be getting up.  In the morning, parents make breakfast and lunches for family members and leave the Family Life Center by 7:30 a.m. at the latest.  You then strip your bed and put the linens in the laundry basket provided in your room, wipe down the kitchen area, and take the garbage to the dumpster.  Lastly, lock the front door and exit by the side door, which is self-locking.

Please sign up in the Glass House to become a part of this worthy mission.