Valentine’s Day is a special day: a day of love, a day for showing your true appreciation for those around you. But at Family Promise SGV our host volunteers let our guest families know they are loved each and every day. When our guest families enter the program they are not sure what to expect, but they are greeted with warmth and welcome by the volunteers, they are made to feel comfortable, fed and encouraged. They enter as strangers, but leave as friends.
They experience God’s love through our volunteers’ hospitality and affection.
We would like to take this moment and express our gratitude and appreciation to all of our host volunteers. Without you, our program would not have the ability to run as smoothly as it does, and the fact that we understand the kind, supporting and caring hearts that each of you have helps us to not only sleep better at night but it is great comfort for our families as well.
Knowing that there are so many wonderful souls in the world gives us all hope that we really can end homelessness, one family at a time. So this Valentine’s Day know that Family Promise values the love and assistance that you provide on a day-to-day basis and it will never go unrecognized. Sending you nothing but love and warm wishes, Happy Valentine’s Day Host Volunteers!
Some of our host volunteers already know our new van driver, Frankie.
Frankie and his family were guests of Family Promise during the summer and early fall. He is also known as Jennifer’s husband and the father of Nathan and the twins. They now have their own home and Frankie is now one of our van drivers. We are so happy to have him on the staff. Frankie has never given up on his search for work, on his needing to pass the commercial drivers’ test, and on life in general. Our driving team, Luis and Alonso, generously supported Frankie as he prepared for the test. He is also living proof of how God’s people can reach out and touch a family in need at their time of need.
We welcome Frankie to the Family Promise staff. Thank you, Family Promise volunteers for all the love and support you give each and every day.
We are very excited to welcome two new congregations to the Family Promise network.
First United Methodist Church of Temple City agreed to become a sponsor congregation last November. Sponsor congregations educate others about and pray for Family Promise families, volunteer to serve on committees, give financial support as able, and mobilize by partnering with a host congregation, participating in events and initiative. First United Methodist has helped Sierra Madre United Methodist when Sierra Madre hosted guest families in the past. We are very happy to welcome them as an official sponsor congregation. We look forward to working with Pastor David Palmer and his coordinators, Marcia Galland and Gladys Oberholtz in this wonderful endeavor.
Church of the Good Shepherd United Methodist has agreed to become a host congregation in the Family Promise of San Gabriel Valley network. Church of the Good Shepherd will provide volunteers, meals and overnight accommodations for our guest families as part of the hosting network. We look forward to working with the Rev. Philip Bertolo Wood and host coordinator, Richard Vethamani, as they prepare to offer hospitality and compassion to our guest families. We know they will be blessed as well as blessings for those in need.
The Big Band Theory rocked the San Gabriel Valley last month with fun, food and funding for Family Promise of San Gabriel Valley. What a wonderful evening it was at the Langley Senior Center in Monterey Park!
Big Band Theory is tagged the “Smartest Band on the Planet” for a reason. The musicians are also engineer and scientists. And were they wonderful!! The music was fantastic and the Fred Astaire instructors, Danielle and Rumen, helped everyone get on their feet and learn to swing.
The dinner was deliciously catered by Fabiolus restaurant in Hollywood. And it was plentiful and pleasing to the palate. A silent auction included tickets to Disneyland, dinner and theater tickets, Big Bang Theory DVDs and more.
It was so much fun to watch the ballroom dancers from our host congregations as they glided around the dance floor. You were awesome!!
Even if you aren’t into dancing, there are still many reasons to come to our “Big Band Theory” event Saturday in Monterey Park and bring your family and friends.
Fabiolus restaurant in Hollywood is catering the event at the Langley Senior Center in Monterey Park. Here is the menu for the evening:
- salad with wild arugula, baby spinach, mozzarella, corn, avocado and corn dressing
- fusilli pasta with mushroom, spinach and cream sauce
- chicken with Marsala sauce
- sautéed vegetables and roasted potatoes
It is a pleasure to introduce Dominique, our administrative assistant. Dominique has been with us since last spring as an intern. We are grateful to be able to bring her on the staff as a full-time employee.
She has been an asset in so many ways, creating an organized way of managing our supply inventory, giving our guest families well-organized supplies, answering phones, being a presence to the families when they have questions, and engaging in a positive way with the families and children. In addition she has provided staff support to our Fund Development and Network Partners committees.
“I love Family Promise of San Gabriel Valley. It’s very apparent that everyone involved with Family Promise that I cross paths with has a genuine heart for the work that is being done and has always treated me — as well as our families — with the utmost respect,” Dominique says. “Family Promise has made a huge impact on my life and for that I will forever be grateful. I am truly blessed to be a part of something so wonderful.”
Dominique is also a student at Pasadena City College and her career goal is to be a social worker. Perhaps one day she will be the director of this or a similar program.
Big Band Theory, which will perform at our fundraising event on Saturday, Jan. 25, is a group of Pasadena-area engineers and scientists that performs big band and swing music at dance venues and festivals.
The band was started in 1998 and has recorded its own CD album with songs made popular by Count Basie, Duke Ellington and Benny Goodman. Their repertoire also includes songs that Frank Sinatra made famous, like “Fly Me to the Moon” and “Come Fly With Me.” Visit this page to listen to more samples of Big Band Theory’s music.
So come enjoy dinner, dancing to Big Band Theory’s music, and a silent auction to raise money and help homeless families! Our event will be held from 5 to 9:30 p.m., at the Langley Senior Center, 400 W. Emerson Ave. in Monterey Park.
Tickets are $40 in advance or $45 at the door. For tickets or more information, call Family Promise at 626-569-0991 or visit http://bit.ly/bigbandtheory4fpsgv.
Disney Corp. will match every donation employees make to Family Promise of San Gabriel Valley up to $15,000 per donor.
Disney has agreed to list Family Promise SGV as an eligible organization in its employee match program. Please tell your friends, neighbors and co workers who are employees that this is a wonderful opportunity to help our homeless children and their families to a brighter future.
Thank you all for your caring and support of this important program. And our thanks to the Disney organization for its philanthropic endeavors.
There is much to be thankful for this holiday season. In spite of the cold weather (I know we are blessed to live in California, but it still feels cold!), our families have a place to be at the Resource Center during the day and inside one of our host congregations each night. Our families are well fed and not having to worry about where the next meal will come from.
Thanks to State Senator Ed Hernandez, Family Promise of San Gabriel Valley received four turkeys to enjoy. Two went to our most recently graduated families to enjoy in their new homes, and two were prepared for our current guest families for Thanksgiving dinner at Trinity Church of Nazarene. All day long, we received text messages from our Family Promise SGV alumni wishing us “Happy Thanksgiving.” They all expressed their thankfulness for Family Promise SGV and all our volunteers. What a warm and wonderful feeling it is to have someone reach back to say thanks to all the wonderful people that make this such a great program.
Now we are looking forward to Christmas. The Family Promise parents were feeling sad about not being able to provide for their children’s Christmas in the same way that other families could. So the generosity of those in our community really made this a special time. Southern California Edison employees provided gifts for our current and graduated families, while students from Muscatel Middle School brought groceries for holiday meals.
The Muscatel students delivering donations to the Resource Center.
Our families are so grateful for the compassion and generosity of their community. To have complete strangers reach out at this time gives hope and encouragement to these families as they struggle to regain or maintain a roof over their heads. Our thanks go out to Edison and Muscatel Middle School. Their kindness and generosity is what makes this such a wonderful time of year.
Megan and Family
Megan and Nicholas and Julie moved into their transitional housing program earlier this month! They are so blessed to be able to stay rent free for six months and have their own bedroom and bathroom as well as lots of support and life skills training. Our social work intern will continue to provide aftercare services to them.
Megan and her family came to us from a Skid Row mission. She had a part-time job, but did not make enough to rent a place. Although she and the children were not with us long, she accomplished a lot in a very short time. She also received a lot of support from Family Promise: during their stay we celebrated Nick’s 13th birthday; Megan got work-ready clothing; we gave her a bus pass so she could get around town and put in job applications; she got Julie’s birth certificate so they could register for WIC, and her family got new shoes at the Alhambra Rotary Payless shoe event. On several occasions Megan expressed that she felt safe and supported, saying, “Thank you for getting us out of the Skid Row area.”
Megan and her family are the reason we work so hard. It is a blessing to know that she and her kids will not only be safe, but will be much stronger as a family and more able to maintain their independence with the ongoing life skills and social support they will be receiving.