We serve the greater community in many ways at Precious Blood Center. In March we were very excited to welcome “Family Promise of the Northland” families and their host church, Annunciation Parish of Kearney, Missouri. Two families with eight children between them and their hosts stayed their first week with us the end of March.
A grandmother, with two children of her own, raising five grandchildren and a single mom with serious health issues and her six year old daughter found love and hospitality from Annunciation volunteers and Precious Blood Center staff. Precious Blood Center was full of energy and joy when they arrived in the evenings, each being dropped off by their bus, coming from school, daycare, their place of work, or time spent at Family Promise Center in search of a job.
With the help of parishes like Annunciation and host sites like Precious Blood Center, Family Promise is able to provide a low cost alternative to emergency shelters, typically not found in the northland of Kansas City Missouri.
The mission of Family Promise of the Northland is to help unemployed and underemployed homeless families in the Clay and Platte counties achieve self-sufficiency.
While in the program, participants receive food and shelter, and comprehensive support services aimed at helping them find stable housing and employment as quickly as possible. Guest families also have the opportunity to develop life skills through individualized case management by Family Promise staff and personal mentoring by volunteers at the Family Promise center, located just a few miles south of us.
Four times a year, for a week at a time, Annunciation Parish will provide meals and hospitality to families who are homeless and will now stay overnight at our center. At Precious Blood Center, the families are able to have beds and bathroom facilities (showers and tubs), making the week much more comfortable, and a welcome change of pace from staying in church basements and halls.
It is our desire to host Family Promise families more often throughout the year, by partnering with other area churches or groups. St. James Parish of Liberty will join us this next year. We are looking forward to working with them to host another four weeks within the year. With both Annunciation and St. James Parishes participating, the families will possibly be able to stay in one location for two weeks.
A quick note of other news from our Center: final design work is in place for our new reconciliation labyrinth to be constructed later this spring and early summer. Please save the date, August 14th, 2015 for a gathering and dedication of our new labyrinth.