Community Housing Partnership Update
From “10th Street House Mentor Team” to “CHP Mentor Team”
Pastor Gordon Wiersma
Hope Church has a new opportunity ahead for what is now the “CHP Mentor Team” and we invite you to join us!
The demolition of the 10th Street House brought about a major transition with the Community Housing Partnership (CHP) at Hope Church this past program year. Over the past decade, the 10th Street House provided housing for many families and had been a focal point for our support of the CHP ministry. It was painful to lose the 10th Street house but also a time to be grateful for all the work and support that had gone into that home.
The demolition required that the Mentor Team assess if and how to continue with the CHP Ministry, and as 2014 has unfolded we have a plan for a way forward. We want to update you on that plan, and ask for your support in prayer, encouragement and participation.
- Our Mentor Team will continue to support two families, but now at two separate locations, on Holland’s South Side. So instead of the “10th Street House Mentor Team” we are now the “CHP Mentor Team”!
- Many thanks to Vern Boersma who is retiring from the Mentor Team after many years of faithful service. Vern has been a wonderful presence of caring and encouragement for the CHP families.
- Kristine Bradfield, Marilee Nieuwsma and Allison Davelaar are continuing on the Mentor Team, supported by Gordon Wiersma and the Community Ministry, and also supported by the CHP staff through Good Samaritan Ministries.
- The Mentor Team members take turns making weekly check-ins with the families, and respond to specific needs from time to time in consultation with the case worker for the CHP families. We also provide some grocery supplements each month through a great system that Kristine Bradfield has developed. Families in the CHP program are provided transitional housing for a 2-year period as they are supported to move into a more stable long-term setting. The Mentor Team is a valuable connection of support for the families, and the Mentor Team is blessed in getting to know and appreciate families in our community.
We would love to have some additional Mentor Team members, and thought it would be helpful to hear some first-hand experiences from current members:
Joining the CHP team is an easy way to have a positive impact on the lives of local families in need. The once a month phone calls I make to the families are always warmly received – it means so much to them to know that there is a team of people praying for them, thinking of them, encouraging them, and asking them if they have any needs the church can help them address.
I see mentoring as one way to share the love of God for all God’s children. Sometimes I’ve helped in concrete ways by driving to doctor’s appointments, cleaning, painting or purchasing curtains. At other times I’ve mentored with a simple phone call; listening to problems and difficulties and responding with concern, letting a person know that we care and are praying for her/ him. Showing loving support is what it’s all about!
Please consider being a part of the CHP Mentor Team as we take on a renewed focus supporting families at these new locations. And we ask for the entire congregation to pray for the CHP Mentor Team members, the families in the CHP homes, and for all those who work to support these families. Please watch for ways that you can provide special support from time to time.