Family Promise shelter seeks to give refuge to Valley homeless families

(Submitted Photo)

Family Promise shelter is reaching out to the public with spreading the word that the shelter is open for all homeless families in the Valley, especially during the hot summer months.

Families in Arizona are battling homelessness, some for the first time, and parents, children and family pet are forced to sleep in their car or unsafe areas because lack of capacity in local Arizona shelters, according to a press release.

With the recent reports of at least one death among the Phoenix homeless population, the chances of families suffering from heat exhaustion, hunger and facing decisions like giving up the family pet, are extreme.

Recent statistics show 27 percent of the homeless in the Valley are families, 47 new families become homeless each week, over 100 families go without shelter nightly because of lack of capacity at other Valley shelters and 84 percent of homeless families are single mothers with two or three children under 10.

“It hurts my heart seeing homeless families losing loved ones due to extreme heat in the Valley,” Ted Taylor, executive director of Family Promise of Greater Phoenix, said in a prepared statement.

“I feel compelled to get the word out about Family Promise, since many families may not even be aware we exist, let alone what we are doing to provide emergency shelter immediately.”

With one phone call to Family Promise at 480-659-5227, a family without a home and living in extreme heat can get safe emergency shelter. With a decentralized intake system, there is no waiting time involved.

Family Promise seeks to keep the entire family together, including their pets at their one-of-a-kind pet sanctuary, and offers more than just a place to sleep and a warm meal, a release states.

Family Promise operates a family homeless shelter at 7221 E. Belleview St. in Scottsdale and partners with 37 local faith organizations to house families in immediate need of shelter.

The organization is one of 202 Family Promise programs throughout the country providing meals, a homelike setting, emotional support and a full range of social, economic, and educational services.

Family Promise also offers families the ability to bring their pets into shelter with them; vet services and in-kind donations; access to basic needs such as diapers and hygiene kits at no cost; cash management training; and access to affordable housing.

It also offers life skills training, parenting classes, technology-based reading program, and other family empowerment programs; rapid-employment and assistance; k-12 advocacy and intervention services; and aftercare graduate program with access to resources to achieve long-term self-sufficiency.

“This heat is no joke for families without shelter,” Mr. Taylor said. “Our goal is, with the communities help, to quickly access these families to see if shelter at Family Promise will help stop their pain and suffering.”

The Apache Junction Independent publishes a daily newsletter and website. A print edition is mailed each month to 35,000 homes.

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