Homeward Bound
Serves low-income, homeless, impending homeless, and domestic violence families with children providing help to move toward self-sufficiency.  Families are assisted with a hand up-not a hand out.  Participating families in the program must provide 30% of their adjusted gross income for housing, utilities and support services. 
Single parents sometimes come to a point in life when their future, and that of their children, seems hopeless. In Maricopa County, they have a door to knock on. It’s called Homeward Bound. Through community support, this organization provides transitional housing and a broad range of services, including food, child care, clothing, employment assistance, budgeting, and parenting programs, and wellness counseling, for homeless and domestic-violence families with children. One of their mottos is: A hand up and not a handout. In return, the parent must maintain employment from which a percentage is used to help fund the road to independence in their own home.
Desert Palms is one of the sponsors of Homeward Bound, with its generous yearly donations through the Mission Committee. And with this support comes the opportunity to “adopt a family.” Currently, we serve as a Family Advocate to Shelley and her six-year-old daughter, Kennadie. They have been associated with Homeward Bound for about three years, during which time Shelley has achieved her goal of being a day care director, as she works toward independence. She continues to learn how to budget her finances, parent her daughter, and plan for their future.
One of Shelley’s biggest concerns at the moment is her imminent “break” from Homeward Bound. Although long awaited and hoped for, total freedom also brings its worries. Right now, she must develop belief in herself and trust in the skills that she has learned. We are there to lend an ear and to give her faith and encouragement. We see our role as similar to grandparents. Although we are not allowed to provide her money, we do take them to lunch; give birthday gifts; make phone calls; send cards; and in general, show our concern and interest in them on behalf of Desert Palms.
It is humbling to watch the struggles and issues faced by this young family. Although we hope that our encouragement and the church’s donation provide needed support, we ask that you keep Homeward Bound and all their families in your prayers. Through a variety of support sources today, these families have a chance to live better lives tomorrow.
Last Published: February 20, 2008 7:22 PM
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