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2012 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Family Promise Knoxville

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Homeless & Housing, Homeless Shelters, Housing Expense Reduction Support

Mission: Our mission is to help homeless and low-income families achieve sustainable independence. We recognize that poverty is a multifaceted problem that requires a multifaceted response. We respond by integrating educational outreach, smart programming, effective policies, and the hands-on work of thousands of volunteers. We provide food, shelter, and support services for homeless families. We provide advice and advocacy for at-risk families to prevent their becoming homeless. And we educate people about poverty and the means to combat it.

Results: The numbers as of 12/31/2018 Family Units 237 Family Members 744 Children 433 Children Under 5 182 Average length of stay - 63 Nights Shelter nights 43,200 Meals served 131,739 Successfully obtain safe secure housing - 74.5% Going Home: Staying Home graduates - 58%

Target demographics: families with minor children experiencing homelessness

Direct beneficiaries per year: Twenty two families in shelter; 79 persons including 39 children. An additional 26 families were served in Going Home; Staying Home.

Geographic areas served: Knoxville and surrounding counties

Programs: Provide support and assistance with shelter, food, clothing, and school needs to families with children experiencing homelessness referred to the organization by social service agencies and others in the community. Area congregations partner with us to provide overnight shelter and meals. We offer financial education and credit counseling, nutrition, and family strengthening classes. Through our Going Home; Staying Home program, we serve families who have graduated from shelter into housing for two years. This provides sustainability of housing and real opportunities for a better future.

Community Stories

42 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Family Promise of Knoxville provides both tangible and intangible service to its clients, homeless families with children. The families receive meals and a clean, friendly, safe place to sleep through Family Promise's partnership with area churches, as well as a day use center with laundry and storage facilities, quite spots for homework, and play areas. In addition, the families receive help finding housing, getting employment, and, when necessary, navigating the labyrinth of social services available to them.

2 Courtney29

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Family means a lot to many people. The success of a family means the most to Family Promise of Knoxville. This is a great organization. The volunteers are great, the staff is awesome and the families are wonderful. The way it is organized uses the network of churches and support site wisely and to the best benefit of their guests.

1 Joyce35

Donor

Rating: 5

Family Promise is an excellent organization which helps homeless children and their families get back on their feet. They are good stewards of the money and resources donated by the community. As they work to grow, they are ever mindful of the generosity of their donors as well as the needs in the community for this population.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Working with Family Promise for the past 6 years has broadened the my life and the lives of many in our church. We use our Children's Sunday School area to house our guests when they stay with us. The children of the church help, move chairs, make beds, draw welcome signs and sometimes make cookies for the families. How wonderful to learn about the effects of homelessness when you are so young. These youngsters are the future of our society. What a wonderful way to become aware of others needs.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered for Family Promise Knoxville since it started. I am presently the volunteer coordinator at my church. What makes Family Promise Knoxville great is the way the volunteers offer their help and support without question.

Previous Stories
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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with Family Promise of Knoxville for over 8 years. I have found this non-profit to be efficient and effective. The families enrolled in the program get the help they need to become self sufficient quickly and their success rate for keeping the families from becoming homeless again is greater than 85%. I don't think there is a better run non-profit in Knoxville.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have served as a volunteer, a volunteer coordinator at my church and 4 years on the Board. There are countless amazing aspects of the program but the one that touches my heard the most is the children. I originally became involved in the program to help provide a blessing to the families and the children. I quickly found out that I was the one receiving the larger blessing when I heard the squeal of a kindergartner who got the first look at her new bunk bed. Family Promise Knoxville is a remarkable program.

1 Pat_18

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with Family Promise from the beginning, 3 years as our churches coordinator. It is such a great feeling to see homeless families move to jobs, housing and independence. This is not an easy program, moving children and all your belongings each week to a new church with new rules is not something you do without commitment. The FP staff have requirements and rules that must be followed or you are out. These you families have budgeting and parenting classes to help them succeed. I am proud to be a part of the program.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We have been involved in Family Promise from the first rotation of guests. This is an organization that actually moves people from dependence to independence in a short time. Being able to see this happen and in a small way be a part of the process is very rewarding. We have helped in many capacities each rotation and it is great to see the "graduates" and hear the success stories each year at the pasta cook-off. Pat L

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with helping the families in the program for a number of years and feel Family Promise does outstanding work in our community. I have seen miracles happen for many families in need all with the help of this great organization. Those volunteering have the heart to serve and it makes such a tremendous difference in the lives of those who desperately need assistance.

Gordon F.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As far as I know, Family Promise is the only organization in Knoxville that serves families - that is their purpose- to provide housing that keeps moms and dads and their children together during their time of temporary homelessness. Additionally, Family Promise provides transportation, parenting classes, financial classes, and the tools for finding jobs as well as sustainable housing. I am a volunteer at one of the host churches. So for one week, about 3 times per year, I am able to interact with the families and see their appreciation for the program and hear about the success stories when the next family moves into more permanent housing. Family Promise provides that life-line and is desparately needed in this community.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Family Promise of Knoxville takes a unique approach to help make families with children self-sufficient by meeting both immediate needs for food, shelter and transportation, and developing long term skills for employment, parenting and managing a household. All this is done in a very cost effective manner.

Donor

Rating: 4

Family Promise has served many members of our community for years even through a name change. Our church has logged countless hours caring for the clients and helping them on a pathway to independence and a home. Children should have a safe and nurturing environment to live and grow in. This organization helps further that goal. Homelessness for children is growing problem in our area and Family Promise is helping with the problem.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My husband and I have spent the night with Family Promise folks for years! The families in this program are on the way back up- to housing, to jobs, to independent living ! Each morning when we leave them, we marvel at their tenacity and at their faith that they can reestablish their lives. We are amazed, and we are humbled, by what happens to us all through Family Promise!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer for a number of different organizations in my life but feel that Family Promise makes a bigger difference in the lives of people in crisis than any other organization I have worked for. To see families supported and encouraged during their time of need and then return to self-sufficiency and housing in a relatively short period of time is a truly rewarding experience for volunteers like me.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Family Promise does a great job with their clients. They have best practices that they follow and hold residents accountable for their actions. I have watch people receive housing, job training, and get a better handle on their children. Sometimes the clients need more help than others, but it is really a pleasure to meet new people on a path to a new life through Family Promise. Plus I look forward to forward to our week with new friends.

Volunteer

Rating: 3

Westside UU Church is a strong supporter of Family Promise. We have been a host church for nearly 2 years. I have personally participated in each host week in a large or small role. We as a church community pledge our continued commitment to Fsmily Promise and its important mission.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Family Promise makes a real difference helping homless families get into a home and get back on their feet. The reason this nonprofit is so impactful is because it's focused on relationships. Family Promise walks beside families, offering them mentoring. Family Promise also brings together faith communties to host the families so congregants from faith communities can make a difference and also get a different face related to homelessness. I have served meals with Family Promise and served as an overnight host, and I must say the experiences have given me a different perspective on homelessness and hope that we can make a difference.

Cindy47

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My family and I have cooked and served meals for the families staying at our church, Westside UU Church, every time we have hosted families. It has always been a wonderful experience.Our ten year old helps. He sets out plates and flatware. He plays with the other kids. Last time, one of the fathers was someone that graduated from high school with me. To be able to give back in such a personal way is wonderful. To be able to teach our son how good it is to help others is priceless. On the practical side - Family Promise is so organized. The trailer arrives; we set up. The families arrive promptly. It's a great non-profit that's helping our community one family at a time.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteer through Westside Unitarian Universalist Church (Knoxville) to host homeless families in the Family Promise program. The program works well to identify highly motivated families needing support to work toward stabilizing their living situations. FP provides an effective support system that addresses all needs to ensure a successful path to self-sufficiency. The program focuses on giving families a hand up, rather that just a hand out, which enables families not only to succeed in supporting themselves, but also to become contributing members of society. Spending time with the families during "host week" at our church is a meaningful personal growth experience and a privilege for my family and me.

Lorie A.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been very impressed with Family Promise of Knoxville. They work hard to ensure that the host churches are clear about the expectations of them, and they provide amazing support to the families. The families are generally helpful, appreciative, and open about their situations. I love seeing the success rate! And I love spending time with the children.

Kathy73

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with Family Promise through my church, Westside Unitarian. The program is very well organized, and both the families and volunteers have a clear understanding of the program expectations. The families are well screened. The program features family education on financial management and raising children. Adults are assisted with job searches, finding housing, and transportation. All the families we have hosted have secured housing . Initially, our small congregation was not sure we had the energy and resources to provide shelter to these families each quarter. Now, about 50% of the church volunteers during each Family Promise week - because we can feel what a difference we are making!

Ellen31

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered for Family Promise through my church, Westside Unitarian Universalist Church, in Knoxville. Family Promise not only provides shelter to homeless families, but it also gives families a chance to get their lives back on track with jobs and housing. Nothing is more heartwarming than the knowledge that we've done a little bit to keep children safe and secure with their families.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We have found it heart warming to share our plenty with these families. They are interesting, hard-working people. I am grateful that they share their stories with us. We always enjoy providing dinner one evening and being with children again!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered many times with Family Promise. they help homeless families to get back on their feet - they teach parenting, finance, etc to parents. They provide a place to live, take the kids to school, feed them and eventually help them to get into permanent housing. If this is not the greatest, I'm not sure what is.

Michael118

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Being able to provide shelter and care over the Christmas Holidays for the homeless families staying at our church this past year was particularly rewarding and made all of us mindful about the need to care for those in need.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a member of First Pfresbyterian Church, Knoxville Tn where we host Family Promise families 4 times each year. I grocery shop for the families while they are in our care. While I am shopping, I feel a joy in knowing mothers, fathers and their children are getting the help they need right now and with us and that this care is happening all over the country. To be able to help families in desperate times find the compassionate help they need to get back to their real family life is a great privilege and I thank Family Promise for the opportunity to be part of this service.Blessings to all,Doy Barron

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a coordinator for our church, and am very proud to describe Family Promise Knoxville to volunteers within the church. We have had great support from FP Knoxville during host weeks, and have had the satisfaction of seeing most of the struggling families get back onto their feet, and into housing. The program is rewarding-our congregation has an almost 50% volunteer rate, with volunteers choosing tasks aligned with their abilities and interests. It takes a lot of energy to support families getting a hand up in the program, but it is well organized, and FP Knoxville successfully brings in families that will work hard to make permanent changes and stabilize their lives. I have been privileged to work with Knox Family Promise and to offer the volunteer opportunities to so many people in our congregation.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I previously served on the Board of Directors of Family Promise of Knoxville (FPK). I now work as a volunteer through my church. FPK serves a unique need in our community. When people hear "homeless" they think of the guy downtown on the street. But, homeless means much more to families with children. It means families being split up when seeking emergency housing. It means children have trouble getting to and staying in school. With the help of loving congregations of all denominations, FPK answers that need. Churches and volunteers offer up unused Sunday School rooms for bedrooms and meeting rooms for meals and homework. Children get transportation to school. Most parents work and are able to get to and from work, with the help of a day center for children and parents if needed. Families are able to stay together. And, FPK offers daily help to obtain permanent housing. FLK serves homeless children and their families and helps them get back on their feet. I help coordinate our church's work, 4 weeks a year. I have stayed the night with families as a 'host'. I have enjoyed meals with the families and games with the children. With FPK, "homeless" to these children and families means having people who don't know them reach out and lift them up. That's what makes FPK a GREAT non-profit.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Family Promise of Knoxville is an inspiring organization that lends a helping hand to families. It is a joint effort of guests helping themselves, volunteers providing meals and volunteer hours of service, religious organizations and other organizations providing support and shelter, and a dedicated staff - all working together to provide a stable and safe temporary haven for families who find themselves homeless. Life can throw boulders in our paths; this program assists families to cope and plan and overcome the adversities they face. As a volunteer and previous coordinator for a support church, I have observed former guests in the program become volunteers themselves. I have seen guests grow in confidence and self respect as they faced and solved problems and met their goals of independance. Time and donations in support of Family Promise of Knoxville are truly well spent!

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am a recent addition to the Family Promise Board, though I have been aware of their great work for many years. Family Promise is a fantastic organization led by dedicated social workers and professionals who are driven to empower families and achieve positive and permanent changes.

Chloie A.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Our church has been involved since the start of Family Promise here in Knoxville & we love being a part of this wonderful. The families I have met are incredible!!!!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been part of Family Promise since it was only an idea in Knoxville! As part of the original board of directors, we researched the need in this area and the services that were being provided by other nonprofits. This organization is so different - it serves families that are just going through a hard time - and Family Promise provides a safety net for a few months - until they can get back on their feet. I have been on the board as well as well as the coordinator at a host site - and the rewards I get from working with the families and kids have been life-changing for me. I always love to see the relief on the faces of the parents when they realize that they and their children will be safe, when they realize that they will have food and shelter and people surrounding them who love them - and this gives them the time and courage to keep going and solve the problem of housing, employment and transportation. I used to give to lots of nonprofits - but now I like to give to Family Promise because I know what they do and that the money goes directly to services for the families.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a volunteer with Family Promise, and I truly love this organization. It is rare that a family who needs shelter would be allowed to stay together, since usually shelters are either male or female only. But at Family Promise a Father can stay with his children and their mother. The program helps families get back on their feet, and I believe this is one of the most rewarding aspects of the program. To see the transformation that happens in some families, from their entry into the program until they move into their own housing. Family Promise is a program where the family comes first and every action taken is to strengthen those bonds.

Corky C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My wife and I are Family Promise Coordinators for our church. Family Promise is a belief based non-denominational partnership supported by nearly 30 churches here in Knoxville.
This is an amazing program, and I am seeing it work with my own eyes. I am so prowd to be a part of it. This program is a helping hand of support for families in despair. These families have lost any support system they may have had. They are out there with their children. Struggling to feed them and with no place to live. It is desperate situations, and these families are hurting. Family Promise helps ease the pain by lifting and supporting these families by providing a safe place to stay, food, support, and encouragement. This is not long term homeless support, but it is a program that helps families to get back on their feet.

My church's involvement is one of support. We are teamed with an area church to help support their needs for one week every 3 months as they house families in their church.

The way this works is that an area church houses families for one week at a time Sunday through Saturday. Family Promise provides beds to the host church, and provides transportation for our guest. During the day the children go to their schools and the parents go to work or go to the Family Promise Day Center and receive help getting jobs, or other support. Our guests are then delivered back to the church at 5:30 each evening, and we provide dinner.

After dinner there are activities for the children, homework, movies or any number of things, to be done just like in mine and your homes. The parents attend financial budgeting and other classes each week. The support church along with the host church provides the meals and activities for these families. When our week comes to an end the families are moved to another church, and so on.

There are many ways you can help with Family Promise. From cooking meals, helping with activities, preparing snacks, or breakfast, movies, or other forms of entertainment, reading books to children, helping with homework, or helping financially with needs such as school supplies, diapers, or other needs. We are desperately trying to raise money for a much needed new day center to support the growing needs.

This is a great program. It has been instrumental in helping so many families rise from the depths of despair. I ask you to get involved by volunteering or by supporting this ministry financially.

Andrew N.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I served as an intern for Family Promise of Knoxville for about nine months. During that time I had many great experiences but my favorite experiences were always moving day. Often I would help the people load and unload on moving day and it was great feeling to see the looks on the faces of the families. For you and me home is something we to often take for granted. In reality it is essential for our identity and having a place you can call home means the world to the former guest of Family Promise of Knoxville.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Our church has been a co-host for about 2 years. We partner with a host church and provide an overnight host, an evening meal and help with Sat. morning breakfast. I have been impressed with the overall organization of the program. These families have daily access to a social worker and the director of the program. They have weekly meetings that teach them about budgeting, nutrition and parenting. Being a part of a program that has volunteers from many different religions working together has been a real blessing. I look forward to helping for years to come.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Ministry that lies deep within the heart of family promise is a true gift from God. Not only to the family's engaged in the program but to all who serve the community in order to make this program possible. The fellowship that is shared within the true body of Christ is a wonderful thing. Thanks be to God

Jonathan12

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am happy to be a Pastor of a church who hosts families of Family Promise. It is a joy to be part of this life changing organization. I had a chance to see a family, a single mother with two young children, move into an apartment after staying in Family Promise for several months. They were so excited to get back on their feet with some tools (weekly seminars from professionals in the community), furniture to furnish the place, and a new scooter.

Linda108

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering for Family Promise since our church began the service about two years ago. What an organized group! They have every "I" dotted and every "T" crossed. They do not push me to do more than I am able and are always so appreciative of my time spent with the families. This group doesn't just "go through the motions." They live and breathe Family Promise. It is just a part of them, and the families are always so grateful for the help.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a Volunteer who spends time at our Church when Family Promise's families spend nights during our week where we have the families housed overnight in our Sunday School rooms. I usually stay one night and in the morning make breakfast for the families. Without the support of Host congregations these homeless families would probably be spending every night in their cars (if they have one). Family Promise tries to take in these families and have them into housing within 60 days. The families spend the day time at the Day Center where they use computers to find jobs, housing, support, etc (after training by Family Promise Social Workers) so they can move out of the program. Without Family Promise these Homeless Families would be still homeless and in very stressful situations. They have a large list of additional families that need their help but due to not having a larger Day Center Family Promise cannot help these additional families. Family Promise of Knoxville does a very good job of helping Homeless Families in the Knoxville area.

Donnie M.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

What a life saving organization this is. Our church is one of the home churches who houses these lucky clients. The families are so very grateful to Family Promise... otherwise, they would be living in their cars or on the street with their little children. Family Promise gives them a chance to get back on their feet and regain their pride and lives. I just wish it were a bigger organization as I know there is a waiting list of needy families.... how heart breaking for the people at Family Promise to have to turn people away who are so in need. They are truly life savors!