Notes from the Director

July 2012

“Before you were my grandma, what were you? Were you just a person?”- Skye (my 4 ‘almost 5’ year old granddaughter)

gloria-and-skye 

Grandchildren are such a blessing. I thank God every day for my grandchildren and the opportunity to help them grow and be part of their lives. It’s also really amazing to hear the things they say and try to make sense of them. When my granddaughter asked me if I was ‘just a person’ before I was her grandma, it struck a chord with me. We talked about how everyone is someone’s mother, child, brother, sister and we all have many important relationships in our lives.

At Family Promise of Gallatin Valley the one overwhelming characteristic I see with the homeless families we serve is that their relationships have been fractured. We often hear stories of escaping an abusive, alcoholic or drug filled home at a young age, fathers who reside in prison, brothers and sisters who don’t talk to each other, family breakups and no one to turn to. Many young families feel like they are all alone in the world. They have no support system and don’t know where to turn.

Besides offering the essentials of food, clothing and shelter Family Promise offers another human essential: support. Every evening there are caring volunteers that offer a hand to help and a heart to listen. Staff understand the everyday struggles and offer guidance, not criticism.

Homeless families are surrounded by caring individuals that become like family to those we serve. People go from being “just a person” to a valued friend and neighbor. A past guest recently wrote, ” When I came into the program you guys were like strangers, now as I am leaving the program, you all are like family. Family like I have never really had…”

Now what could be better than that?

Gloria