California Faith-Based Organization Helps Homeless Women and Children Get Back on Their Feet

  • Kayla Koslosky Former Editor
  • Updated Nov 19, 2018
California Faith-Based Organization Helps Homeless Women and Children Get Back on Their Feet

A faith-based charity in California is getting homeless women and children off the streets one tiny house at a time. 

In recent years charities across the nation have been creating tiny home communities for all types of people to meet their needs. While there are tiny home communities in the east for homeless veterans, on the West, a faith-based organization called Acres of Hope has created a tiny home community for homeless women and children. 

According to Faithwire, Acres of Hope works to provide women and children, 92 percent of whom are domestic or sexual abuse survivors, with physical, psychological and spiritual aid.

“People need to have their basic needs met, obviously. They need to have food, clothing, shelter. But that’s not going to transform them,” the organization’s executive director Lisa Risdal, told Faithwire. “That’s not going to equip them to be able to support themselves and their children. It’s not gonna equip them to succeed or even become a loving and nurturing mom.”

While the charity does put women and children up in tiny homes for up to two years to provide them with a place to live, the organization is interested in so much more than that. Acres of Hope is interested in transforming people’s lives through Christ and providing them with job and life skills training so that they can succeed once they leave the community, their website notes

Women who apply for the program must go through an extensive interview process before they are admitted into the program and are then permitted to stay for up to two years. The organization then puts them up in a tiny home that has been personally decorated for them and their children.

Risdal told Faithwire that by providing the mothers with their physical needs, it allows them to process their previous traumas and take care of their emotional and spiritual health.

Risdal also said this allows women to learn that they have “a loving God and that they have something that’s much bigger than themselves that they can lean on, that they can draw from, finding out that they are worthy, that they know what a safe and loving relationship looks like.”

“If your coping mechanisms were drugs and alcohol, or other destructive things in your life, and you take those away from somebody,” the director explained, “you have to replace them with something, because stuff’s gonna happen, and they need to learn how to cope with those things.”

“So being able to introduce them to the Christian faith and to our beliefs, they now have that ability to fall back on that,” she continued. “That becomes their coping mechanism, so they don’t have a tendency to go back into addiction. It’s huge in healing.”

Acres of Hope currently has enough room to house 10 families in their tiny home community and are eager to expand the project.

Photo courtesy: Ethan Hu/Unsplash