Family Promise Week (formerly IHN)
Cornerstone is helping to end homelessness, one family at a time, through our partnership with Family Promise. We have been a host congregation for Family Promise Week for over 20 years by providing food, friendship and shelter for families in a housing crisis, one week at a time, up to four times each year.
Help Make Cornerstone “Home”
You can help end homelessness one family at a time! Be part of Cornerstone's Family Promise Week (formerly IHN) when we make Cornerstone's 84th St. Campus "home" to families facing homelessness, for one week at a time, four times a year.
There are lots of ways to plug in (see descriptions on the Volunteer Sign Up Form):
* Sleep at Cornerstone in your own room as an Overnight Host
* Join the Set Up Crew
* Provide and Serve Dinner one night
* Plan and provide Kids Activities
* Be part of the Tear Down Crew
* Assist a Coordinator for one evening
* Learn about Family Promise Week
* Make & Serve a Hot Breakfast on Saturday morning
* Drive a truck
... and more!
Family Promise Week FAQs
We know you have questions about what Family Promise Week is, how it works, and what it looks like. Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions.
In "The Square" , which is the CornerKids area of our 84th St. Campus. Each classroom is turned into a “bedroom” or “studio apartment” for a family. Families share the larger part of The Square as a “dining room” space, and share one tv room, plus share the kitchenette space. We have dreams of one day, being able to shelter families at each of our Cornerstone Campuses. If you attend a campus other than 84th St. and would like to be part of the team to host families at your Cornerstone location, Tracy Bowers would love to hear from you! firstname.lastname@example.org
We can shelter up to 5 families at once, or about 20 people.
Most of the families are referred to Family Promise through 2-1-1 or the Salvation Army’s intake process. What makes Family Promise Week unique is it's specifically for families, meaning parents with infants - 18 year old children living with them.
Families arrive on a Sunday afternoon/evening and stay with us for one week. They "live" at Cornerstone during the evenings through early mornings.
Adults go to the Family Promise Day Center located Downtown Grand Rapids. Students still go to the school where they are enrolled. Parents have appointments, and work with their social worker/case manager to seek permanent housing.
There's a network of churches that shelter families for one week at a time. Once our week wraps up, families then shelter at the next congregation on the schedule. Often, families are able to get housing while they’re with us, and we celebrate with them that they’re moving into their own place!
Every family situation is unique. On average, 90% of families find a home within nine weeks of entering shelter, and are still in homes two years later!
Cornerstone was one of the first congregations to jump into this opportunity over 20 years ago! At the time, there were only five rooms available in the GR area for families to stay together as they were facing homelessness. All other local shelter programs would separate the families based on gender. So if a single mom had a 10 year old son and an 8 year old daughter, the boy would have to stay at a men’s shelter, separated from mom. Today, there are more than 30 rooms available to families facing homelessness in greater Grand Rapids — and yet, it's not nearly enough to meet the need.
Sign up to be part of our next host week! Dates are listed above. There are lots of ways to plug in:
- Sleep at Cornerstone in your own room as an Overnight Host
- Join the Set Up Crew
- Provide and Serve Dinner one night
- Plan and provide Kids Activities
- Be part of the Tear Down Crew
- Assist a Coordinator for one evening
- Learn about Family Promise Week
- Make & Serve a Hot Breakfast on Saturday morning
- Drive a truck
... and more!
The Volunteer Sign Up Form has the dates, times and full descriptions of each volunteer role. We’d love to have you join us in helping to end homelessness one family at a time!
If you’d like more information, have questions, or you're interested in being part of our Family Promise Week Coordinator Team, please contact Becky Bailey. She'd love to talk to you!