Learn more here about the recent activities of Houston Achievement Place, Living Water International, Northwest Assistance Ministries, and The Beacon. If you feel called to assist them, please visit their websites below.
Houston Achievement Place (HAP)
Project CLASS (Children Learning Appropriate Social Skills)
Houston Achievement Place and Project CLASS are working with children, teachers and parents in our schools and homes. Covid-19 has greatly accelerated our online
and at-home activities and offerings. We welcome your blessings and prayers for
the disadvantaged and underserved children we help.
With the goal of equipping tens of thousands of children 3-8 years old with core-foundation skills for improved behavior, learning readiness and academic achievement, HAP has developed an incredibly innovative and creative initiative involving an integrated series of Children’s Books, Animated Films of these Books, Parent & Educator Guides and Demonstration Videos- ideally suited for churches, schools, families and daycare. This Children’s Books Animated Films Social Skills Digital Initiative is part of our Project CLASS (Children Learning Appropriate Social Skills) program. This new Initiative is extremely unusual in that it has the capability to not only benefit tens of thousands, potentially hundreds of thousands of children, parents, teachers, foster parents, grandparents, daycare & after-school staff, but to do this in a way that is remarkably cost effective and economically viable. Almost all of these new developments are free internet giveaways through our projectclass.org website.
In service, Paul Gilford, Executive Director
Living Water International
When the COVID-19 pandemic spread across the world in March, our country offices and field teams continued to do what we have always done—share the love of God through water, sanitation and hygiene (critical for life in this pandemic and all pandemics to come), and share the hope of Jesus Christ (critical for this crisis and in all crises to come). We elevated and focused our effort as we sprang into action with a 90-day response plan. Despite the ever-evolving challenges of travel bans, lockdowns, and other restrictions, our dedicated teams focused on meeting immediate needs across the 18 countries where we serve. By June 30, we had reached 4.6 million people with COVID-19 prevention messages, installed 1,700 handwashing stations, distributed hygiene supplies to 197,900 people, and directly supported 4,900 churches and 450 healthcare facilities—all while also completing 211 water projects for 83,000 people in vulnerable communities.
During this next phase, we will continue our virus prevention efforts in a myriad of ways, on the frontlines in vulnerable communities providing life-saving access to water, sanitation, hygiene, and the hope of the gospel—needed now more than ever. We will continue to mobilize thousands of churches in our program countries as they work through how to continue to care for their church members and carry out the mission of the church. We invite you to join arms with us through prayer and financial support.
For more information about how you or your church can help, please contact Ruth Githumbi at 832.538.8647.
Northwest Assistance Ministries (NAM)
Northwest Assistance Ministries (NAM) is deeply grateful to the Houston / Harris County community for the tremendous support during these extraordinary times. NAM’s service area was one of the hardest hit areas of Harris County in two ways – Northwest Houston has a lot of positive COVID-19 cases and the economic hit has been devastating. Many businesses are shut down or are laying off workers, and thousands of families are trying to live with reduced incomes or no incomes.
NAM continues to assist the increasing number of families seeking food, rent assistance, medical care, domestic violence intervention and other emergency help – most for the first time in their life. Taking steps to streamline our services, the intake process has reduced the amount of time needed to provide help and minimize personal contact between clients and our staff – helping us all stay healthy.
Our Family Violence Assistance Center served clients remotely for several months, taking hot line calls and providing all services just as we did when the staff worked on-site. NAM’s Pediatric Health Center and Counseling Services are incorporating Tele-Medicine into client visits whenever possible. Obviously, this reduces patient staff contact. NAM’s Training and Learning Center has converted to on-line classes and Meals on Wheels now delivers a week’s worth of meals every Monday to over 900 seniors. We are also phoning our seniors and checking in on them regularly.
In August, 2020, NAM began partnering with the Houston Food Bank and Spring ISD to facilitate a supersite food give-away. Every other Tuesday around 2,000 families pick up 70 pounds of produce, meat and dairy products we distribute at Planet Ford Stadium or at IAH Airport.
The increases we are seeing in requests for assistance are far above what we originally budgeted, so NAM continues to communicate these challenges with our donors through direct mail, e-mail and social media. We remain thankful for this community, which has repeatedly supported NAM during times of distress and we all count on that continuing.
During this unprecedented time, NAM will strive to provide basic human needs in a manner that serves and protects staff, volunteers and clients. NAM is proud to report that while staying open and serving thousands in our community over the past 5 months there has not been a single case of COVID-19 reported by any NAM team member.
A wonderful success story, which happened to be picked up by the BBC, is about our client, Greg, a single parent:
Greg is a single father with three daughters ages 7, 12, and 16. He was already living paycheck to paycheck, but the COVID-19 pandemic erased what remained of his income.
Greg was facing eviction. His mobile auto repair business rapidly slowed down with the Stay Home, Work Safe Order that was put in place in Houston. For his business, that meant fewer cars on the road that he would be called to fix.
Although evictions were not being filed, he was told that he and his daughters would be locked out of their apartment. He was getting ready to sell everything he owned to pay the rent when someone told him about Northwest Assistance Ministries.
Greg came to NAM on a Monday to apply for rental assistance. He came to NAM in despair, but left with hope. To date, NAM has paid 3 months of rent for him and his 3 girls to stay in their apartment.
Now, with the city gradually reopening, he is getting back on his feet again. Greg said he is extremely grateful to NAM for being here and helping him. His oldest daughter said that even though this has been a tough time for them, she admires her father for his strength. The family even agrees that this difficult time has brought them closer together as a family.
Currently NAM is preparing for our Season of Blessings when we will provide Holiday Meals both in November and December along with holiday gifts to over 1,700 families.
To support NAM during this Season of Blessings:
- Holiday Food (Frozen turkeys, canned green beans, stuffing, canned sweet potatoes etc.)
- Gifts – New unwrapped gifts for children 0-12 under $20
- Financial donations are always appreciated.
Everyone is going through an inordinate amount of change and uncertainty because of the COVID-19 pandemic and this is exceptionally true for individuals experiencing homelessness. Since March 13th, The Beacon has continued its important work amid the pandemic, modifying operations in each of its program areas as necessary.
Most notably, The Beacon has been one of a few primary meal providers for individuals who are living unsheltered. On March 13th, the organization began providing meals outside of its Day Center facility in downtown Houston and extended its days of service from five to seven days a week. Two take-away meals (one hot meal and one sack lunch) were distributed every day of the week.
Over the summer, The Beacon’s meal distribution increased to more than 300% over the previous year. And while the organization was able to stretch its resources for more than six months, other service providers in the area resumed meal services and frontline staff at The Beacon witnessed first-hand the need for more one-on-one engagement with the clients. At the center, Jim Morgan who serves at The Beacon’s chaplain began seeing clients face-to-face on a regular basis with protective protocols in place.
As of Thursday, September 24th, inside meals, showers and laundry services are available for a capacity of up to 90 people per day, Thursdays through Mondays. In addition, in-person pastoral care is regular offering for individuals seeking respite and hope during these troubling times.
The Beacon’s civil legal aid services, housing assessments and navigation services along with case management and mail privileges have all continued in modified fashion.
We are grateful to the many volunteers and supporters who have helped us continue these important services during the pandemic and we humbly ask for continued financial support, volunteer time and prayers.