Looking for an opportunity where the family can volunteer together doing meaningful work?
OurCalling, a faith-based Dallas nonprofit that provides support services to the unsheltered homeless, will host its annual Family Fun Night on Saturday, April 21, from 4:30-7 p.m. at its new outreach center, located at 1702 S. Cesar Chavez Blvd. In addition to burgers, bounce house inflatables, games and obstacle courses, the event will offer parents and children a chance to learn how they can befriend and serve the Dallas homeless community as volunteers throughout the year.
The cost is $10 per person to attend. The event will be held on the grounds and inside the new center, which opened in 2017. The innovative 32,000-square-foot downtown facility offers various unique and first-of-its-kind services to homeless men and women who live on the streets. These include zero-barrier entry (no ID required), private locking shower rooms, publicly accessible toilets, laundry services, private counseling rooms, classrooms, a worship center and, most importantly, space for training, educating, collaborating and investing in long-term change.
“Volunteers are the lifeblood of our organization, so it’s important to engage volunteers of all ages,” said Wayne Walker, founder, executive director and pastor at OurCalling. “The Family Fun Night is a great way to kick off a tradition of family members – from toddlers to teens – coming together to help others in need.”
OurCalling’s purpose is “to develop transformative relationships with the unsheltered homeless.” Staff and volunteers annually visit thousands of remote homeless encampments across Dallas (under bridges, in woods, behind liquor stores) to provide spiritual guidance and distribute food and personal products. Having donated 60,000-plus service hours in 2016, volunteers, staff and partners have established relationships with more than 8,500 unsheltered men and women, served thousands of meals weekly, and hosted nearly 800 classes for the homeless community.
The Dallas nonprofit also has created innovative referral tools used by hundreds of nonprofits throughout Dallas County. Over the last few years, they have circulated 75,000 copies of a printed hand-held directory with hundreds of resources and organizations that actively help the homeless throughout the city. OurCalling also created a mobile app that has delivered a remarkable 500,000 referrals to homeless resources nationwide. The app is available on iPhone and Android platforms.
For details and to register, go to ourcalling.org/familyfunnight