Becoming a Host Congregation
Hosting provides families who have lost their homes with safe, secure lodging and a sense of community. It gives volunteers the opportunity to provide hands-on outreach in their own congregational facility. The following are the basic elements needed for a congregation to be a host for Family Promise of Greater Wichita.
- Space for up to 4 families, 14 individuals, to stay for a week at a time, 4 times a year. The space used can be classrooms, offices or a large hall with dividers. Since a host congregation is providing hospitality to families for the week, the guests’ areas are not broken down during the day. (Usually, congregations host 2 to 4 families at a time.)
- A common area for meals, homework, relaxation and fellowship.
- Two bathrooms: one for women; one for men. (The day center provides showers.)
- Space for volunteers to sleepover (any available space at the congregation can be used, e.g. offices, hallway, etc.).
- A kitchen for meal preparation (dinners may be cooked at the congregation or brought in and heated there), a refrigerator, food staples and necessary clean up items.
- The congregation is responsible for all meals (nutritious cooked dinners, simple breakfasts and supplies for sack lunches), utilities (heat/cooling, water and electricity), linens, and various basic items such as toys, soap, etc. The network supplies the beds.
- Volunteers: A congregation should always have at least 2 volunteers present and generally not more than 4 at a time. Volunteers can come from other congregations and organizations; all volunteers undergo orientation before they begin.
Our building is in use almost all the time. How will we find the space?
Congregations are busy places with many demands on their space. Rarely does a perfect space exist. Hosting almost always means making some scheduling adjustments for activities and meetings. For example, four or five times a year, AA or the Bible Study Group may need to move their Tuesday night meeting to another room.