But this year we have FOUR teens to get accepted into college. Reva is going University of Texas @ Austin to study English, her sister Ronnesia is going to Lamar University for Nursing, Jasmine is going to Sam Houston State university to study Forensic Chemistry and Chanice will be attending University of Houston to study Psychology. That’s amazing.
It has been exciting for me as well as for them. And The Grace Foundation is helping each one of the girls with a $3000 scholarship. Maybe you can help these girls too.
I look forward to watching them walk across the stage this year and four years from now! Who is coming with me?
Supporting Houston Ministries
As Director of Star of Hope's New Horizons Program, I get to minister to the needs of others every day. I have the privilege of encouraging others in times of worry/distress and times of achievement/success. I also get to pray with others on a daily basis for just about anything and everything.
My clients have been concerned about my upcoming leave of absence for medical purposes. But, they are not concerned in the way we might think:
- They are not worried if their rental subsidy will be paid;
- They are not concerned as to whether the Community Prayer Time on Mondays will be canceled;
- They don't ask about services which will be delayed or eliminated...
So, that is what I am asking..."Please, pray for me." I will miss all my clients, staff and the daily running of the New Horizons Program, but I know that all will be fine in my absence. The Lord will guide the staff and clients just as He will guide me in my recovery. Again, what an honor and privilege to be a part of the Star of Hope and this New Horizons "family."
Well, these clients are certainly not my children--many of them would cringe at the thought!! But, as I interact with them, pray for/with them, share their struggles and cheer their achievements--I feel much like a parent.
On Saturday, March 5th, I was told that one of the Star of Hope Mission - New Horizons clients had been injured at his job and was taken to the hospital. I immediately prayed, "God, please let him be alright!" I texted him...asked him to call when/if he was able.
He called right back. "I got hurt at work, Miss Erika." More details followed...then, "I have to have surgery on my leg." I asked him what we could do for him...could we bring anything, do anything??!! And, in the most humble, contrite spirit, I heard him say, "Please pray for me."
I can do that, I thought. "I will let everyone know to pray for you...is that okay." He agreed that I could tell the others in the program. I sent out the word that he was in the hospital and needed prayer--many of the clients texted back saying, "I will be praying!", "Oh, I just talked with him yesterday! I will keep him in my prayers."
And, that is why I do what I do...I get to encourage others, pray for them, and minister to them in their time of need. What better job in the WHOLE world??!!
UPDATE: I visited Artie in the hospital today. He is in a lot of pain and I was able to listen to his concerns, pray with him and encourage him...what a privilege and honor.
These words were posted on Twitter last Saturday by LeighAnne Tuohy, following Star of Hope’s Annual “Because You Love” Banquet the night before. It was our best attended banquet ever with 1700+ donors, corporate sponsors and community partners in attendance. Sean and LeighAnne Tuohy, the couple who inspired the movie “The Blind Side”, were our guest speakers.
This week, we are hearing stories from those in attendance who were touched in a special way by the evening’s activities. We always work to educate and inspire. We want to educate folks on what homelessness is, who it is currently affecting in Houston, and how they can help. And we seek to inspire through videos and live testimonies of clients of Star of Hope… who have seen their lives completely turned around by the power of God’s love and by the opportunity they receive to start a new life while at Star of Hope.
The number of homeless families in our community doubled in just one year, from 2009 to 2010. With your help in 2010:
- Star of Hope’s family of ministries graduated 46% more clients from our programs
- 44% more completed and were awarded high school equivalency GEDs
- 40% more Clients found jobs, than in 2009
- We also were excited to announce that during 2010 we saw 629 households restored into independent living in the Houston community
All of this could not have been done without YOU, “The Star of Hope Family”…our donors, volunteers, church friends, partner service providers and corporate supporters.
Thanks for all you do in the many individual ways you serve along side of us at Star of Hope. And if you’d like more information, visit www.sohmission.org right now and find out how you can become involved in this exciting ministry in our city!
He left the office with his two framed photos and an envelope of pictures...the only tangible memories of a year-long relationship with the woman he hoped to marry one day.
Back-story: I read an email one time:
"Author and lecturer Leo Buscaglia once talked about a contest he was asked to judge. The purpose of the contest was to find the most caring child. The winner was a four year old child whose next door neighbor was an elderly gentleman who had recently lost his wife. Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman's yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there. When his mother asked him what he had said to the neighbor, the little boy said, 'Nothing, I just helped him cry.'"
Today, I was told that one of our New Horizons residents had lost his long-time girlfriend. She had become ill last week and succumbed to her illness within a day. This man, in his time of grief, was offering encouragement to others this past weekend. "Make sure you say the things you want to say to those you love," he said to another resident, "because, you never know when it will be your last day to talk to them."
This afternoon, he came to the office asking me if I could help him get some pictures off his phone and print them. So, that is what we did! For about 40 minutes, he emailed me the photos he wanted and I printed a few of each picture. I even framed a couple for him to put in his home. I was so blessed and honored to be able to "help him cry." He left the office with his two framed photos and an envelope of pictures...a few tangible memories of a year-long relationship with the woman he hoped to marry one day.
Many of our men have children from whom they have become estranged. Beneath the surface of their bluster and bravado gnaws the grief of knowing that their sin and self-serving lusts have separated these men from their boys and girls. In our shelter they come to understand that it is through the love and power of Christ alone that the grace of harmony has hope. Our men, knowing that they have demolished the blessing of fatherhood, look to Him for a miracle. So they pray for a spirit of forgiveness. They search for some opportunity to humble themselves before their children. They seek an avenue by which to demonstrate to those innocents whom they have wounded that they are new and trustworthy creations through the renewing mercy of Jesus Christ.
In three weeks, 51 men who have come here to begin again will have a simple gift to give to their children. Though not one of them has earned the money to purchase it, all will have something to give precisely because they have made the best decision possible: to come to Star of Hope where they may be cleansed and equipped for the walking of a new way. One man will have a football to give a young son. Another will have a doll to give his little girl. Each - through the generosity of Christ-honoring donors - will be supplied with a tangible expression of love's yearning. The father's hope is that his child's present will serve as another brick helping pave the pathway advancing toward a day of reconciliation.
At the Men's Development Center we expect Christ to undo the arrogant works of hell as He establishes, through the servant-leadership of redeemed fathers, multiplied houses built upon the rock. That will be an Advent-level miracle. That is what Star of Hope is about. That is what you support and love.
2000 years ago, three men set out on a journey in search of the one who would make a difference in the world and change things for the better. It was a long, probably uncomfortable trip. They were not cruising on a high-speed road in a luxury sedan, or listening to their favorite tunes through surround sound. They were lumbering along for hours on the hard backs of camels.
But they were determined to find what they were seeking. So they followed a bright, eastern star. For them, it was a star of hope.
Every time I think about the trip they made to see Jesus, I am so grateful to be living today. Just think about it….you and I don’t have to travel to find Jesus. He is Emanuel—God with us! No matter where we are, he is there, too. Our hope for today and all our tomorrows is woven into that fact, and his promise to never leave us or forsake us. This, I believe, is the true joy of Christmas.
In Jeremiah 29:11 the Lord says, “I know the plans I have for you…, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future?" Is there anyone in reach of this blog who doesn’t need hope and a future? I know I need this promise more than my morning jog, and I have to have my morning jog.
Though troubles come and go, we must always take time to reflect on how easy our Father has made it for us to receive this promise. He has given it to us freely, through the finished work of Jesus Christ, and the word of his testimony, spoken through scripture throughout the pages of our Bibles.
We also have a legacy in the experience of the three wise men, because it was the bright star that led them to the hope that is in Christ Jesus. And for those of us who work or reside at Star of Hope Mission it is the name Star of Hope that reminds us everyday that we, too, have been led to a place where Emanuel is found. He is available, loving, and willing to change things for the better. In this we join the men of old, having also received the great and amazing gift of hope: Jesus Christ
I would like to leave you with Isaiah 40:31
Those who hope in the Lord
Will renew their strength,
They will soar on wings like eagles,
They will run and not grow weary
They will walk and not be faint
Have a blessed Christmas and precious time with our Lord.
A group of 18 volunteers from City Life Church, Houston, TX, came to help the New Horizons and Follow-up Staff make 24 Thanksgiving Meal baskets to distribute to families and individuals in the programs. City Life Church wanted to find a way to do Charity Work Houston and Supporting Houston Ministries. They found a way to do just that.
Having collected food items which included green beans, sweet potatoes, rolls, and more; the group delivered the food and assembled the baskets.
All 24 baskets prepared...what next?? Some of the residents picked up their baskets--but, we got to deliver some, too.
Volunteers went with staff to deliver the baskets to five of our Follow-up clients. They were so excited to receive this blessing!!
We had a few baskets leftover...what were we to do with them. One of our New Horizons residents came in and asked if he could give on to his neighbor; another former New Horizons resident said he had a co-worker who was having a hard time. They wanted to know if they could have the extra baskets to give to these people in need.
What a wonderful thing to see--formerly homeless individuals reaching out to others in need. That is what this season of gratitude and giving is all about. These two men, Brian and Ken, KNOW what it is like to have nothing and receive grace and mercy. Now, they were on the other side of the exchange--they were the ones giving!! They loved it!!
The volunteers wrapped up with day with prayer and said--"We will be back!!" I love the holidays--Hope always floats up--especially around the holidays. I can't wait for Christmas!!!!
by Scott Arthur
He's universally known as one of the best-selling and most influential artists in Contemporary Christian Music. A three time Grammy Award winner with 40 Dove Awards and 13 million records sold, this Christian Superstar is an everyday Joe - I mean Michael.
On October 18th, just 11 days past his 53rd birthday, Mister Smith went to Houston - and without singing a note - wowed hundreds and hundreds of fans. He was signing - not singing and music lovers lined up to meet the man and have him autograph his new
CD " Wonder".
The occasion was another KSBJ Street and Greet. Star of Hope, in partnership with area Lifeway Book Stores, sponsors the event as music giants appear at selected stores and sign the merchandise. But most importantly - they meet their fans.
Now I think its fair to say that Michael W. Smith appeals to a vast and widely diverse audience. His career so far has spanned at least three decades and shows no signs of stopping. He is the Frank Sinatra of Christian Music - and his loyal audience goes ga-ga when he's around. No wonder he was named one of People Magazine's "Most Beautiful People."
He has the ability to treat every wide eyed housewife and giggling teenager, every bashful kid with a guitar and every hesitant husband with three CDs with fresh, genuine enthusiasm. He's the real deal - down to earth with a heavenly smile.
I even had a chance to chat with him about our city's homeless and the state of Houston Non profit Donations. I suggested that he record a song about the homeless - maybe with TobyMac - he smiled and said "write it - and we'll see." Hmmm - I love a challenge.
Michael will return at Christmas time to perform in our area - check out KSBJ for details and please continue supporting Houston Ministries.
Family homelessness is tragic, and affects not only mom and dad, but also their children. Many times, a child will blame themselves for what is happening. Our single men and women who seek help at Star of Hope without bringing their entire family most always have broken relationships with their spouses and children also. And we work to reach out to these family members to help healing progress within that family.
Did you know, Star of Hope is one of only a few homeless providers in Houston who keep the family together when they come for help? Without Star of Hope, many children would be separated from their parent(s) by Child Protective Services, just because they become homeless. But at Star of Hope’s Women & Family Emergency Shelter, families stay together as parents receive services and counseling to get their lives back together. Their children have help with school and great activities, and yes, a time to share THEIR heartfelt prayer requests and needs. We lift them up to our Heavenly Father, and seek His power in their lives.
Recently, one of our teens wrote about his experiences while at Star of Hope. He said, “I am grateful for all Star of Hope has done for me while my family has been homeless, and for all I’ve learned about God’s love for me. As I grow up, I want to be an M.O.G." That means...a Man of God.
by Scott Arthur
The event was billed as the Star of Hope "Can" Film Festival - inviting all to bring a donation of "Canned Goods" to help us feed the 1,000 homeless men, women and children we serve in our Shelters in Texas EVERYDAY.
You know how your favorite part of the movie used to be BEFORE the feature ...cartoons and stuff? (I know - I'm really dating myself). Well on Saturday night - I thought the show before the movie was great. Top rated Sunny 99.1 radio personality (and Star of Hope board member) Dana Tyson hosted the night and Houston's First Lady of TV - KHOU's Deborah Duncan sang The Star of Hope song - which she co-wrote. Then, the crowd was treated to a 4 minute tour of Star of Hope Shelters Houston Texas hosted by our President and CEO Hank Rush - big as life on the giant screen.
The audience was even given an opportunity to donate $10 by texting SOH to 20222. For a limited time - that donation will be matched by a generous donor. So if you are so inclined as to donate - now is a GREAT time to be supporting Houston Ministries, especially Star of Hope, one of the most effective non Profit Organizations Houston.
It was a magic night. For those of you who have trouble imagining it - here's a link to a quick Star of Hope YouTube "Can Film Festival" tribute.
Get together 120 bags filled with toiletry items, six sets of clothes, two towels, a bathing suit, and load them on three buses filled with 120 excited, yet nervous kids and teenagers and what do you have?... One of the greatest experiences of a young child's life. You have camp! One of my favorite weeks of the year as a Youth Minister at Star of Hope's Women and Family Shelter is being able to get my hands dirty and make this week of camp happen for these youth. Every youth that is able to go receives brand new sets of clothes for camp. Even more than the clothes they receive, they also get the experience of a lifetime (swimming, canoeing, blobbing, hiking, fishing, etc.), that some will never get again. But even more than the experience of a lifetime and clothes, they receive the "good news" of Jesus Christ and the chance to begin that relationship with Him. This camp is so crucial for these youth!
As I said before, the week of camp is one of my favorite weeks of the year. And now that camp has passed yet another year, I can reflect on all that God has done. But none of it could've been possible without the financial and prayerful support of those who sent us. For five years it has been a blessing for me to be apart of what God does with these youth at camp. I am so grateful for those who supported it. So, the countdown has begun! 50 weeks and a camping we will go... again! If you would like to give of your resources to support this or another aspect of Star of Hope, visit Ways to Give and learn more about Supporting Houston Ministries.
Please partner with Star of Hope Alumni (ACTS) and give to a worthy cause. ACTS is hosting their 2nd Annual Bowling for Compassion Fundraiser on Saturday, August,7 2010 from 10:30 AM to 1:30 PM at Emerald Bowling Lanes 9307 Boone Road, Houston, TX 77099 (281) 933-6180.
Last year’s successful fundraiser was an indication that we were in God’s will. In the last twelve months ACTS Mobile Outreach Ministry has brought the Good News to thousands through music, bible studies, servant Saturday, testimonies, job search aid, transportation funds, education assistance, skills training, furniture for those in need, groceries, clothing and in many other ways. ACTS even supported an Alumnus’ mission trip to Nicaragua.
In order to continue to impact God’s Kingdom we need your help through your prayer, your time and your treasure.
Click Below to Give on Star of Hope Website: Supporting Houston Ministries with ACTS
There are 7 Ways to Give Support. May God Speak to Your Heart!
1. Pray for us
2. Volunteer your time to serve with us
3. Sponsor as many bowlers as you like for $20.00 per frame
4. Sponsor 2 bowlers for one bowler $100.00
5. Sponsor a team of 5 bowlers for one game for $250.00
6. Sponsor a team of 5 bowlers for two games for $500.00
7. Sponsor a team of 10 bowlers for two games for $1500.00
- A $1500 gift can cover the cost of our metro bus pass program for one year, which allows men to search for work and attend major ministry events for life change.
- A $500 gift can purchase 20 Furniture Bank vouchers, which furnishes an efficiency apartment for four single alumni.
- A $250 gift can sponsor books, supplies, and transportation cost to conduct a twelve weeks small group satellite Bible Study for twelve people.
If you have any questions about ACTS or the bowling tournament, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you and God bless you for your generosity!
Universal Care is available to all. You qualify if you are a visitor with a visa in a foreign land or an illegal alien in despair. You qualify if you are sitting on a plush sofa in your luxurious living room stressed free. You qualify if you are standing in a local government welfare office furious and depressed. You even qualify if you are lying between the bushes of a wild jungle in an undeveloped country craving your next prey.
If you or a loved one is experiencing any emotional, mental, social, spiritual anxieties, this program can help you overcome them. If you or a loved one has any habits, hang ups, or hurts that have isolated you from society, promoted self sufficiency, produced self- grander, or rendered self-disappointments, this program can help you move beyond self-dissatisfaction to a meaningful life of hope, purpose, and relationships. If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol or drug addiction, you can be set free to soar in sobriety once again. Recovery is one breath away.
All services are provided for by the Sole Provider—the Author and the Finisher. He will never leave you hanging on the phone of despair or wondering in the dark about full coverage. He will not exaggerate the truth because He cannot lie. On top of that, whatever He starts, He finishes. Moreover, whatever service He provides, they will be second to none. Don’t worry. You will come to love Him. In the end, everything will work out for your good. He is like a Star of Hope that shines in the darkest moments.
Not only that, the program is guaranteed for one’s entire life, which includes life, death, and beyond. The program will never expire. It is eternal. You will receive personal care that last forever from the Giver of Life-The Soul Provider.
To top it off, all fees are paid for in full by the Redeemer, who is the Sole Provider and the only Soul Provider. Consequently, you will never have to look for another provider. Now, that’s good news.
Just in case you were wondering, the Soul Provider is Jesus the Christ. He died on the cross to pay the cost of our sins and to redeem us back into a right relationship with God. The penalty of sin was and is death but the gift of God (Jesus Christ) provides eternal life in heaven. He paid the cost for everyone’s sins in one divine instant. When society was full of sin and decadence, the Sole Provider became our Soul Provider. He became a medicine of light that brightened the soul in her darkest moment according to Jeremiah 8:22.
Praise God for His Universal Care program of salvation. It offers care and coverage for all emotional states, mental concerns, social disparities, and spiritual conditions.
A. Everyone is welcome to be a part of UC according to I Timothy 2:3-4 and II Peter 3:9.
B. You can be of any nationality, race, gender, or social class according to Ephesians 3: 28.
C. Whoever believes in Jesus and confesses sins according to Romans 10:9 becomes a lifetime member.
Congratulations! No need to agonize and pull out any more hair. Everything you need to know to care for your heart, soul, mind, and spirit for now and for eternity is one click away. Click on The Bible or The Living Word to meet the one and only Sole and Soul Provider, Jesus Christ.
Learn more about Star of Hope Mission and Supporting Houston Ministries.
by Andrew Holmes
This technology provided the infrastructure to consolidate our existing phone equipment into one cohesive system which would provide many features to help efficiency and provide cost savings on system management and carrier charges. The new implementation also provided the means to create a central Call Center that would put those persons calling for help in touch with a caring Call Center Agent that could connect the caller to help, most often desperately needed.
On July 26, 2010 we are finally going to see the vision materialize as we open our volunteer staffed Call Center located at the Star of Hope Hope Center which is the administration building located just South of downtown. This is going to be an awesome ministry but we still need volunteers. If you or someone you know has a few ours a month to spare serving in this new ministry, please follow this link to our High Impact Volunteer page and let us know you are interested.
Thanks so much,
Supporting Houston Ministries: Learn more about different ways to volunteer and ways to give at Houston's Star of Hope Mission.
by Scott McKinley
New Religious Enterprise on Franklin Avenue Will Be Launched Tonight
Dr. D. R. Pevoto, in charge of the mission, stated yesterday that no formal program had been arranged or would be arranged. “We want it to be a spontaneous meeting and we hope that the Christian men of the city who want to see some help extended the unfortunate class who are down and out, we hope that these men will come out and help us in our efforts.”
Services will be held in the mission every night this week. On the first floor of the two-story building occupied by the institution a comfortable meeting room has been fitted up, and here the daily religious exercises will be held. It is proposed to make the mission serve the unfortunate of all classes and as soon as the work can be fully organized, lodging rooms will be fitted up in the second story, a lunch room will be added, a reading room will be installed, an employment bureau will be maintained, and every agency contributing to the physical, mental and spiritual elevation of man will be employed.
The gentlemen already interested in the mission undertaking are earnest and active in their support and are determined to make it accomplish the work that they believe […unreadable…] Houston for it to accomplish.
As was reported in The Post last Monday, Mr. Richard Dowling, who was converted during the preaching of Evangelist Ham here last December, has been secured as superintendent of the mission and will arrive shortly.
Visit Star of Hope at Supporting Homeless Shelters Houston for a summary of the many programs and ministries offered today and join the Legacy.
On Friday, June 18, 2010, Star of Hope Men’s Development Center hosted the Fifth Annual Alumni Fellowship Celebration (AFC). We celebrated the victory of “new lives” in Christ. We celebrated the victory that God has given the alumni over drugs, alcohol, and habitual sin. We celebrated the victory that God has given them as servants of the Gospel of Christ.
Men who have satisfied Client Services and Spiritual Recovery Program requirements and now live off SOH property in their own residence are classified as alumni. This year we celebrated their acts of service in the community and within the Star of Hope facilities. Three different awards were given to the alumni who rendered Acts of Service:
- Eleven alumni received the “Redeeming the Time Award” which was given to men who volunteered through ACTS Ministry (Alumni in Community Transformation & Service).
- Five alumni received the “Sowing the Seed Award” which was given to men who taught or preached at the any one of our four Star of Hope locations.
- Eleven alumni received the “Stirring it Up Award” which was given to men who discipled another alumni
Private Dale C. shared a brief testimony about how the Star of Hope played a tremendous role in saving his life, changing his life, and redirecting his life. On October 20, 2008, Dale signed up for the Spiritual Recovery Program (SPR). While at the Star of Hope, Dale accepted Christ as his Savior. While sharing his testimony during the fellowship, he said in so many words that his life was going now where fast. After completing the SRP, he left to sign up for the United States Army. Looking back over the last two years, Dale has completed two rigorous programs, the SRP and the Army Boot Camp. Dale talks about how rigorous the SOH and Boot Camp training was. He now knows that he needed both of these painstaking training programs to prepare him to serve his country for Christ.
Dale is a true solider for Christ. Dale entered the doors of the Star of Hope at the tender age of 19 homeless and hopeless. Today he is 22 and has a new home in heaven and hope for a brighter future in Christ. He is a great servant of the Most High, and we love and support him.
In the words of the Apostle Paul, “We give thanks to God always for you all (alumni), making mention of you in our prayers, remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father, knowing, beloved brethren, your election by God. For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance, as you know what kind of men we were among you for your sake.” 1 Thessalonians 1:2-6
Visit Christian Ministries Houston to learn more about ACTS, Star of Hope's Alumni Ministry.
At Star of Hope in the past few months, we have seen a significant slump in our contributions, which is very concerning to us. Summer time is THE biggest and most demanding family time of the year at Star of Hope! Many think it’s the Christmas holidays, which are huge, but in summer, ALL the kids are home for three months – that’s more meals, more activities, and higher operational costs! Yet, our donations are always lowest during the summer months, when vacations and family activities take many out of town.
This summer, we have a full slate of daily activities planned for the 200+ children living in Star of Hope facilities with their families, and it's "all hands on deck" for our children’s ministry staff to take advantage of this wonderful time to build a relationship with God into the life of our kids. God does amazing things in these young lives during the summer. Many find a new faith in Christ, and begin to see a vision for their own lives…God’s vision for how to survive and help their parents through their present difficulties, and to begin to make the choices that will help them succeed in finding a happy and productive life as soon-to-be-adults.
If you are able, would you take a moment and make a gift to help us with this incredible task? We need your support NOW, to catch up on the $400,000+ shortfall that has developed the past two months, and keep the food, clothing, counseling, and staff resources available to our families this summer. Just click donate online and give! Share this with your friends and help us make this a “Summer of Hope”, not a Summer of Heat, for the almost 1,000 men, women and children in our care right now.
Thanks for your faithful support, and I hope you have a great summer! Please keep us in your prayers.
Throughout the community, an exceptional group of young people are learning the skills needed to become our future leaders. These young men and women are part of the Boy Scout and Girl Scout programs. What an honor it is to work with Scouts who select Star of Hope as the site for their Eagle Scout and Girls Scout Gold Award projects!
The project requirements are stringent. Scouts must submit a comprehensive plan - containing a detailed description of the project, the necessary supplies and materials, how the project will be funded and how the project will benefit Star of Hope - that goes through many levels of approval in the Scout organizations before work can begin.
This month, Scouts Mark Camero and Kevin Sweat will complete the projects they first proposed last year. Mark designed and is coordinating a team to build shelving units for a storage area at Star of Hope’s Women & Family Emergency Shelter. Kevin designed and is coordinating a team to build a seating area and improve the area around a playground at our Transitional Living Center. Scout Brian Howell is working on a project that will include a new seating area and beautification of an area around Star of Hope’s administration building. From drawing plans to material take-offs, these young men have covered all the bases. Scouts Tyler Barron and Matthew Salazar recently hosted donation drives for pillows, towels, socks and underwear and collected several thousand items! As we work with these young men over many months, nothing is more awesome and inspiring than when the invitation arrives to their Court of Honor ceremonies!
Girl Scouts Madeline Bowser and Kelsey Pearson developed Gold Award projects that enriched the lives of the elementary-school-age children at our Transitional Living Center. Madeline organized and hosted three fun-filled monthly theme parties and also collected children’s socks and underwear. Kelsey, who lived in China for several years, shared her love for international cultures by organizing and hosting three international festivals that included arts & crafts, food and games. Not only did our children benefit from these unique experiences, Madeline and Kelsey were excellent role models.
In addition to these wonderful young people, Boy Scout leader Shana Montgomery has been a special blessing. While working through the demanding Wood Badge program, which teaches advanced leadership skills, Shana selected Star of Hope for her community service project. She helped get our children ready for summer camp by collecting flip-flops in all colors and sizes.
We are so proud of our Scouts and grateful for the many ways they bless our mission! Each Scout demonstrates a tremendous work ethic, dedication and compassion for those less fortunate. Their commitment and service truly gives Houston’s homeless men, women and children hope for a better tomorrow.
Supporting Houston Ministries Volunteering Houston
We started this program in 2008--the economy had taken a drastic downturn--many Houston Non Profits were considering CLOSING their doors, while Star of Hope was creating, developing and introducing a NEW aspect of its service to the homeless.
Our FIRST FOUR units were filled on June 6, 2008. One of those gentlemen still lives in the apartment complex New Horizons calls "home." He has "graduated" from the program, but still keeps in touch with the New Horizons staff and encourages those in the program today.
One of our ORIGINAL residents is still in the program. Entering her third and final year, Sandra D. is still striving for her goals. She created a goal early on to conduct a job search and start working in the field as a Pharmacy Technician. Her credentials are sound, she has put in hours of searching, but the economic downturn has prevented her from changing jobs. She is still working for a gas station and she does not know what the future holds for her family. She has a spirit of gratitude for Star of Hope and all we have done to help her become stable again. Though she is not certain of her future in the healthcare industry, she is certain that her family is the most important thing in her world--she will do what it takes to make a way for them--and that does not include a return to homelessness!!
With the money management tools Sandra received while in the New Horizons program (Crown Financial Ministries) Sandra continues to make ends meet. She is praying for God's favor as she continues to search for Pharmacy Tech positions in area hospitals and pharmacies. Please join us in praying for her!!
Sandra and her children--Christmas, 2008!!
(Photo by: Gary Matthews of Ensource Photography)