Family Promise

Family Promise 10 Year Celebration

10 years ago on Mother’s Day, Family Promise of Missoula opened their doors to 4 families experiencing homelessness. 10 years later we now are working collaboratively with the YWCA to provide support for up to 31 families at the Family Housing Center at the Meadowlark! If you are a Family Promise volunteer or support the program in any way, please join us to celebrate ten years of service for families in our community who are experiencing homelessness: thousands of hours of service, thousands of meals served, hundreds of families cared for. Our gathering will feature a lasagna dinner, entertainment, and short presentations.

Enjoy the new painting, “Family Promise, Kept” by local artist Barbara Morrison. This painting was commissioned to honor the volunteers who envisioned, created, and have grown and sustained Family Promise Missoula

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The Power of Relationship

  By Zeke Campfield, Director, Housing Advocate Network

I wasn’t surprised to read in a online article  that providing a small but consistent cash stream to a pool of unhoused individuals in San Francisco ultimately led to most of them finding housing. After all, why should it make a difference whether a housing resource came in the form of a voucher or cold, hard cash? Those who advocate to keep the “middle man” in this equation might consider learning more about the root causes of homelessness.

What was surprising was further in the article, a little affirmation about what we’re trying to do at MIC’s Housing Advocate Network: To get the money, the participants had to agree to a continued relationship with a volunteer friend. The idea is about understanding “relational poverty” as a barrier to accessing resources in what can be incredibly confusing and demoralizing service delivery systems.

“Building a relationship with a volunteer helped recipients begin to believe in a different future … Volunteers also helped recipients talk through how they could use the money to reach specific goals.”

One study participant said his volunteer gave him “hope, confidence, and friendship” – three essentials that equipped him with the strength and confidence to change. Perhaps we all take for granted the importance of our relationships in brining our behavior, values and goals into alignment?

When I talk to folks in Missoula about volunteering for HAN – a real, tangible way citizens can participate in local housing solutions – I sometimes run into some typical lines of resistance: Time is always top dog, but “I don’t know anything about housing” is also common. There’s also resistance that’s rooted in a culture that sees votes, money and social media debates as the true venue for addressing social issues. Isn’t this what we’re paying our city council to fix?

  Let’s walk through this one at a time:

(more…)

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Baskets of Love- Welcome Baskets

Donations Accepted in February

As families from Family Promise or individuals from the Housing Advocate Network “graduate” into homes of their own, each receives appropriately sized housewarming gifts of necessary supplies needed to reestablish home life. In 2021, 20 deliveries were made.    Donations of supplies, gas cards, gift cards, or financial donations are needed to restock the shelves. Click the button below to signup and help restock our shelves in February.

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THANK YOU! MIC Fundraiser

THANKS to all of you who participated in the MIC Gratitude through Action Gala and Auction.   The auction and pie sales were great fun!   We had some very happy bidders! 

Did you miss our Virtual Gala? 

Click the button below to check out our progress on our goal and to view the video. Available through Friday, December 3, 2021
If you were able to watch and have not yet donated, please consider making a gift.  Every gift – no matter the size – helps us help others.

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MIC Fundraiser: Gratitude Through Action

Thank you for supporting the Missoula Interfaith Collaborative. This fundraiser will benefit Missoula Works, Family Promise, the Housing Advocate Network and Common Good Missoula. 

Register now to join our VIRTUAL GALA on Zoom on November 9th from 7-8 pm for a time of celebration, reflection, and inspiration.   Come learn about MIC programs, hear stories and learn about how to support our work into the next year.  Can’t attend at that time?  Register and we will send you a link to the recording. 

NEW THIS YEAR-  Pie Sales and Online Auction! November 1-12th. 

PIE SALES   Pumpkin and apple pies are for sale in the online store for $15 each.  Limited quantity so don’t wait! 

ONLINE AUCTION Check out the auction tab to see what our wonderful supporters have donated! The auction will will close Friday, November 12th at 8 pm.  Pies, candies, hand made items, gift baskets and more.

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Gratitude through Action Virtual Gala & Online Auction Fundraiser

Join us for MIC’s End of year Fundraiser to include a Virtual Gala on zoom on November 9th from 7-8 pm. We are also holding a pie sale & silent auction online from November 1st- November 12th.

Do you know a good pie maker? We are looking for people to make apple and pumpkin pies to be delivered in mid November. We also are looking for auction items to include speciality pies, baked goods, gift baskets, wine basket, experiences (e.g. cabin on a lake), photographs, paintings, services…. you name it ! Be creative! Sign up by October 30th to donate items! Check out our Virtual Gala & Online Auction Site for more details and to register.

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Family Promise Night Without a Bed Fundraiser

Thanks for your support! ! 

Thanks for showing your support for children and families battling homelessness and raise awareness of this crisis by joining Family Promise’s National fundraiser !

Night Without A Bed Sleep-out

June 26th, 2021   

We raised$15,940 of our $20,000 Goal

with 85 Donors!

All funds will go to support Family Promise- Missoula

THANK YOU!

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Family Promise… entering a new era

REFLECTION ON OPENING OUR DOORS AT THE MEADOWLARK

Terry Burke, Family Promise Advisory Team

On Mother’s Day on May 13, 2012, Family Promise of Missoula opened their doors bringing
hope to families experiencing homelessness; to regain their housing, their independence, and their dignity. A special thanks to the dedicated team from Missoula who laid the groundwork for Family Promise.

In 2013, Missoula Interfaith Collaborative (MIC) formed to strengthen community organizations, generate leaders, and foster meaningful relationships as they act for the common good. In 2016, Family Promise of Missoula merged with MIC to work together and leverage their strengths.

In August 2019, the YWCA and MIC broke ground for the Meadowlark to provide critical support and shelter for victims of domestic violence and homeless families.

Family Promise, since 2012, has served up to 4 families at a time and now, in collaboration with
the YWCA, will be able to serve 31 families. Additionally the YWCA will house up to
13 households fleeing domestic violence at the Meadowlark. We, the volunteers, the local
congregations, and the community partners, have come together to make a difference. On Mother’s Day, 2021, our Family Promise families will spend their first night in the Family Housing Center… a new era for Family Promise. 

Thank you Missoula for all your support in making this a reality!

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Ribbon Cutting at the Meadowlark

What an exciting day! After a year and a half of construction, and several additional years of planning, preparation and fundraising, today we celebrated the official opening of The Meadowlark. This building has truly been a community-wide effort and labor of love (lots of physical labor, too). We’re grateful to everyone that has been part of this project and shares our commitment to serving families, survivors, women and children. We’re looking forward to serving the community here for generations to come! READ MORE
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Community Chaplain

Community Chaplain

by Rev. Courtney D. Arntzen

Spiritual curiosity and sacred questions exist beyond our church doors among many who are situationally marginalized and/or institutionally suspicious. Where do such spiritual curiosities and sacred questions find a hearing when one is not affiliated with a faith community?

I worked closely with MIC during my years as a pastor. When I tell the story of the Missoula Community Chaplain, it starts with my connection to MIC. After leading a reflection at MIC’s celebration event of music and storytelling, I found myself hearing a different set of stories at the Top Hat while a band played on stage.  I heard stories from individuals who did not know if they would be safe or welcome in a traditional faith community. Yet, they asked big questions about God, faith, and the seeming faithlessness of God’s church. They thanked me for listening and asked if we could meet again. Their request had me wondering: Who will listen to them as they wrestle with big questions? Who will nurture their spirituality? Who will come alongside them where they are?  I wanted to be that person.

Not too long later, I found myself at a Welcome Back Potluck listening to stories of struggle and barriers as well as stories of hope. I wondered again about the barrier that a traditional faith community can be for many people within the Missoula Community. “Who will come alongside these people as they wrestle with questions of meaning or purpose?” I wanted to be that person.

Over the last 17 months, I have found ways to participate and be present for others.  I conducted memorials through the communities of Family Promise and Crosswinds Recovery. I provided a reflective workshop for Common Ground/MIC Core Team Leaders. I offer spiritual check-ins with the women’s house of Crosswinds Recovery and regularly participate with Welcome Back. I see a handful of non-profit employees for one-on-one spiritual companionship as together we explore their spirituality and how it intersects with their life. In all of this, I get to be present with people on their spiritual quest. 

 Over the last year, it became increasingly urgent that accessible spiritual care for those outside a traditional faith community is needed. As a community, we work hard to manage and ensure accessibility for our physical, mental, and emotional health. In the midst of this, my observation is that many ask questions of purpose, meaning, life, and death, questions centered around what they believe about the world, humanity, and many a higher power/god/sacred other. If they do not feel safe or welcome within a community of faith, where do they go? If they don’t have a faith tradition they are familiar with, where do they begin? I hope to be an easily accessible person for those beginning their exploration of faith and spirituality. 

Want to be a part of this work?  

Right now, I am looking for a couple of businesses/non-profits to explore how accessible spiritual care can supplement their employee wellness plan. Please reach out if you are interested in learning more or having me speak/present to a group that you think may be interested in partnering with me. 

As a start-up venture, I am also looking for financial partners to offset the cost of ensuring accessible spiritual care for the broader Missoula community. 

I am grateful to extend my connection with MIC further, as MIC recently agreed to sponsor this work fiscally. 

To financially support Missoula Community Chaplain’s work, please send contributions to MIC with Missoula Community Chaplain in the memo. Mail contributions to 2205 34th St. Missoula, MT 59801

Thank you,

Rev. Courtney D. Arntzen

 

 

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