Family Promise is a great program and the success stories are inspiring. Will this model work in a small town like Laramie? We already have so many organizations!
This is a reasonable question that deserves consideration. In fact, a similar question has arisen from multiple granting organizations who have considered contributing funds to this initiative. In the nearly two years that we leaders and volunteers have spent working to establish a Family Promise affiliate in Laramie, here is what we have learned:
We are right on track!
According to our regional director, Jeanna Beck, affiliates generally require 18-24 months to become operational. The process can be slower in smaller cities and towns since there is a great deal of work to be done that requires many, many volunteer hours. As we truly began work on this project in January of 2016, we are in a great spot! We have:
- 11 host churches and organizations
- 5 support organizations
- A 15-passenger van
- A confirmed site for the Day Center
- 5 Board members
- 70% of our funding for a year of operations, as well as a plan to raise the rest
Local organizations support us
Our program services are not replicated by another other Laramie agency. While we do require funding, the resulting savings to the community make this a worthwhile endeavor. For every $1 spent, $3 worth of services and goods are donated in the form of volunteer time, meals, and nights of housing!
- Paul Heimer of the United Way of Albany County has repeatedly said this is a needed service in our community.
- Interfaith Good Samaritan recognizes that Family Promise will offer support that is unavailable in our county. Once we are operational, we will reduce the costs Interfaith dedicates to housing families.
- The Albany County School District supports this program and is primed to refer families to us.
- Several local pastors have relayed stories of families they have met who could have benefitted from our program. One of these families entered the Family Promise program in Cheyenne.
- UW Lab School’s Force of Altruism (pictured) chose Family Promise of Albany County as their beneficiary organization for the 2016-2017 school year. They held their own fundraiser, joined us in a “Car City” fundraising event, and donated over $3,000!
- We have received monetary donations or grants from 11 different community/civic organizations, 9 different congregations, and 7 local businesses.
Community members support us
Individual responses to this program have been overwhelmingly positive and encouraging. We are grateful and humbled that over 50 individuals have donated to FPAC during these planning months. Every amount is appreciated!