Central Texas nonprofit launches campaign to expand their efforts to end homelessness
WACO, Texas (KWTX) - A local nonprofit chosen as a TFNB Your Bank for Life Charity Champion in 2022 has a mission to end homelessness in the Heart of Texas and has big plans to expand its efforts as they launch a campaign to raise $100,000 this year.
The Heart of Texas Homeless Coalition, established in 2004, has a mission to foster community awareness of the issues of homelessness and support a coordinated network of services in Bosque, Falls, Freestone, Hill, Limestone, and McLennan Counties.
The coalition’s membership is made up of over 30 partner agencies, community volunteers, and individuals with lived experience of homelessness who all work together to end homelessness in the Heart of Texas region.
Nicole Wiscombe is the board chair who has been involved in local homeless system leadership since 2017 and says the coalition focuses on sharing resources to do the greatest good.
“The Heart of Texas Homeless Coalition brings all the partners together so that we’re coordinating as one network to help end homelessness in our community so that we’re not duplicating services. We’re all collaborating. We’re using resources to the maximum so we can do the most with the little we have.”
Wiscombe says that the local community has made great strides in ending veteran homelessness but there is still much work left to do, including cutting down on youth homelessness.
“In our community in 2019, we were selected as a youth homelessness demonstration program site. So, we are one of 23 in the country that were selected to implement new programs for ending youth homelessness,” Wiscombe said.
The organization has been awarded millions of federal dollars to help.
In the latest Continuum of Care competition with the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the coalition received $2.28 million to operate housing and supportive service programs.
The Heart of Texas Homeless Coalition will receive free leadership training and a free marketing campaign as part of being named a Charity Champion.
They hope to use this year in the spotlight to raise $100,000.
“We’re hoping to supplement programming that we already have. We have one program called the Flash Program that helps fund getting IDs, birth certificates, beds and other things people need as they’re transitioning from homelessness to housing and then we’re also trying to build capacity as a nonprofit and use money to basically start the foundation of having a location, an executive director, all of those things you need to move from a volunteer nonprofit to a staff led nonprofit,” Wiscombe said.
The Heart of Texas Homeless Coalition will be recognized Saturday on the field at McLane Stadium as the Baylor Bears take on Kansas State.
For more information about Charity Champions, you can visit Charity Champions | Helping Those Who Help Others.
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