GREAT FALLS — After taking a break during the pandemic, an organization called Family Promise - dedicated to ending childhood and family homelessness - is on the rebound. The organization took an eight-month hiatus due to board, staff, and financial pressures.
Family Promise opened its doors in Great Falls in 2015, and has helped more than 100 families in the community.
One of the first steps in the rebound was the hiring of well-known civic and business leader Cari Yturri as its new director. She said, “I’ve watched Family Promise from the sidelines for many years. I was so impressed with the sheer ability to move the families from the different churches and get all the churches involved in helping these families.”
Now, the former general manager of Bennett Motors is taking aim at ending family homelessness: “We just don't want children and families in a time of turmoil to think the community doesn't care about them."
The Reverend Steve Van Gilder, board chair of Family Promise, explained, “There is a need for sure for Family Promise to return and once we were able to start our comeback again, we were encouraged by that."
With the help of nearly a thousand volunteers, 25 faith communities, and countless donors, Family Promise provides shelter, support, and hospitality to area families experiencing homelessness, and they’ve received guidance from the parent organization - and now they’re soliciting input from the community in an effort to get back on their feet.
“We want to hear from them,” said Yturri. “How do they feel we can serve these families going forward?”
“We've continued to receive good support, encouragement from people, phone calls and donors have continued to provide financial support even through the pandemic,” said Van Gilder.
Family Promise will host a stakeholder meeting on Thursday, March 18th, at 7 pm at Central Christian Church in Great Falls. For those who can’t or don’t want to attend in person, the can email Yturri at firstname.lastname@example.org for a Zoom link.
For more information on how to volunteer, and other ways to get involved, click here to visit the Family Promise website.