Written by Sue Ferguson, Board Chair
Two years! This month we celebrate our second anniversary of providing hospitality to families experiencing homelessness in Fort Collins. We came together in the fall of 2011 – an interfaith collaboration of 16 congregations and we’ve grown to 23 congregations and provided temporary housing and meals to 39 families. Our congregations have been there 365 days a year to support our guest families.
And one third of the families we’ve housed have been able to take our help and move to permanent housing of their own! Well over 600 volunteers have been involved and they’ve contributed 1000s of hours of their presence and caring.
Shortly after we began we realized that our initial plan of offering day shelter through the Murphy Center wasn’t really working for our families. So now we offer three days a week of day shelter in conjunction with our wonderful partners The Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship. We’ve now raised $11,000 of the $14,000 needed to put in laundry and shower facilities.
We started out 100% volunteer and we now are able to pay our talented social worker, Sue Peterson, for 30 hours each week and with the help of United Way we were lucky enough to find AmeriCorps member, Ben Story, who has been a guiding presence at the day center.
That’s a lot of progress for just 2 years. A tribute to what strong faith, real commitment and a little audacity can accomplish.