WellesleyWeston Magazine

WINTER 2015-2016

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

Issue link: http://wellesleywestonmagazine.epubxp.com/i/596643

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Page 155 of 211

such as illness or divorce could result in no longer being able to make ends meet. Yet, they earned too much to qualify for state homeless shelters. They were stuck with no place to go, often living out of cars or doubling (and tripling) up at the homes of families or friends. Rather than pushing for new facilities or serv- ices, Olson looked to see what resources were already available in the community that could serve as tem- porary havens while families got back on their feet. Classrooms in area churches and synagogues were not being used overnight. Furthermore, these buildings came fully equipped with kitchens, dining rooms, and play areas and, perhaps most importantly, were filled with members who might want to help. Working with others in the community, Olson brought together a core group of 13 houses of worship, called "Host Congregations," to commit to housing homeless families for four weeks each year. "Support Congregations" were enlisted to supply volunteers to help run the program each night and provide ancillary support during the day. When Mongiardo relocated to Wellesley with her family and joined the Village Church, she wondered if there would be interest in form- ing a local Family Promise affiliate. Around the same time, Christ good works "temporary havens" P H O T O S C O U R T E S Y O F F A M I L Y P R O M I S E M E T R O W E S T 154 W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e | w i n t e r 2 0 1 5 / 2 0 1 6 top, left: Van driver Sharon Mann arrives to pick up families from the hosting congregation; top, right: Case Manager Tina Saadallah assists families with financial literacy; bottom: Volunteers from Liberty Mutual spent their day of service making dinner at FPM

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