Family Promise of Santa Clarita Valley, a nonprofit dedicated to serving local homeless families, hosted their first A Taste of Hope beer-tasting fundraiser at Fasthouse on Saturday.
“I thought we could do something out of the box and more for the adults,” said Amber Alexander, a board member whose husband owns Fasthouse, a local motorcycle racing-themed business.
The event featured a craft beer tasting sponsored by Firestone Walker Brewing Co., an art show with local artists and artwork that was available for purchase, vendors, live music, and appetizers provided by Marston’s Restaurant.
“We’re working to try and bring in the next generation of philanthropists,” said Laurie Ender, board member and former board president.
Family Promise is a hands-on program that works specifically with homeless families in the community to help get them out of homelessness, according to Ender, and all the proceeds from the event will go directly to helping provide services for these families.
“We’re doing great with what we have, but we rely heavily on community support,” said Jerrid McKenna, vice president of Family Promise. “Our whole mission and purpose is not possible without the partnerships we have, and there is always a need for more.”
Family Promise doesn’t have an actual shelter — instead they partner with local congregations who provide places for families to stay, said Executive Director Roché Vermaak.
“During the day, they come to our resource center and we work with the parents to get them back on their feet again — writing resumes, finding jobs and then finding housing,” Ender said. “We’re working with the parents to address what the family needs, but it really starts with the kids. Our No. 1 priority is to keep children in their classrooms.”
Family Promise, which allows families to stay in their program for 90 days, not only provides shelter, meals, transportation, clothing and more but also makes families feel included by giving them a sense of acceptance and dignity in being a part of the community, Ender said.
“We need to take the stigma away from what it means to be homeless, especially family homelessness,” Vermaak said. “Family homelessness is economic — it’s not drug use or alcohol use. Families lose their houses because it’s too expensive.”
Family Promise’s next event will be their spring shopping day where families can come and shop for clothing, toiletries, cleaning supplies, etc.. The event will be on April 20 at Family Promise, located at 24820 Orchard Village Road, Suite A No. 391 in Newhall.
To learn more about Family Promise of Santa Clarita Valley, visit familypromisescv.org/ or call 661-251-2868.