The Family Promise of Southwestern Pennsylvania board of directors is pleased to announce that we will be re-opening our Washington IHN program beginning the week of October 18, 2015.
You'll recall that in November, 2013, we chose to put one of our two IHN programs on hiatus because we did not have enough host churches to support both networks. Since then, our church recruiting committee has been working diligently to bring new partners to the table. We feel confident that, while we do not yet have as many partners as we'd like, we are strong enough to re-open in Washington and that the additional church partners needed in each program will come (we are talking with several churches who are almost to "yes" and quite a few others who have expressed
First off, a huge THANK YOU to our church partners who have continued to host in our Pittsburgh program: All Saints PNC, Bethany, Bower Hill, Chartiers Hill, John McMillan, Mt. Lebanon UMC, St. Anne, St. Ben, St. John, Southminster, and Trinity UMC. Many of you know that we had a banner year last year, serving 30 families with over 80% going to safe, affordable housing. So far this year, we've served 14 families with a success rate of nearly 70%, which is the national average for Family Promise programs.
We are pleased to welcome back the host churches who were on hiatus with us -- Canonsburg UP, Church of the Covenant and Thomas Presbyterian -- we look forward to having you open your doors once again to support families in crisis.
And, welcome to our newest Family Promise host churches - Christian Assembly & the Bentworth Ministerium in Bentleyville, and St. Patrick in Canonsburg, plus more whose names we cannot yet share.
To all our "support" partners -- and there are too many to list -- you have not only our thanks, but the gratitude of the host churches where your volunteers assist.
Family Promise also extends its most grateful appreciation to Crafton First Baptist Church, who provides the Day Center for our Pittsburgh program, and to Church of the Covenant, who has provided the Day Center for our original IHN program in Washington since we opened our doors 20 years ago!
It's important to note that while we look forward to renewing the Family Promise ministry to serve Washington County residents, this re-opening is for a trial period. In summer of 2016, we will ALL come together again to determine whether the Washington program will continue:
- Are there enough host church partners?
- Are there enough guest families?
- Is Family Promise SWPA able to sustain two IHN programs (we are the only Family Promise program in the country, out of over 190, which operates two separate IHN programs in two different counties)?
If all are on-board to continue, Family Promise will enter into a 5-year lease agreement with Church of the Covenant, and undertake a major fundraising effort to address the deferred maintenance on the Washington building.
Thanks for your continued commitment to, and support of, Family Promise and the families God has entrusted to our care. Please know that your kindness and generosity has impacted and changed for the better the lives of many, many children and their families.