HOMEMADE HOPE'S PROGRAMS
Helping children prepare food to nourish body & soul.
Homelessness robs children of more than four walls and a roof. It steals their stability, their sense of belonging, and the comfort of rituals and traditions. Homemade Hope's mission is simple: support children living in shelters, restoring the joys of "home" until the walls return.
Homemade Hope accomplishes its mission through three pillars of work: weekly, hands-on sessions at the shelter focused on cooking and educational support, holiday celebrations that bring families together, and field trips related to HH's culinary focus. Together, these programs provide children with the support, stability, and joy they need to thrive.
HH classes in spring break.
Presbyterian school drive.
MLK Day celebrations begin at HH shelters.
The clink of a whisk against a bowl. The smell of cinnamon apples baking in the oven. The sight of fresh noodles appearing in ribbons from the pasta maker.
These are the experiences that transform the shelter into a home.
Weekly Cooking Sessions
Homemade Hope leads weekly, hands-on cooking classes for children at local shelters. With guidance from a nurturing facilitator, children prepare simple dishes like quiche, taco salad, and fruit kabobs from fresh ingredients to share with their families.
Healthy recipes using fresh fruits and vegetables teach children about nutrition, while cooking instruction empowers them with skills they'll use outside of class. At the end of each session, children gather around the table to enjoy the food they've prepared, sharing a "family meal."
By creating nutritious meals and emphasizing the joy of sitting down to eat in community, Homemade Hope offers food for the soul. And children often ask if they can prepare these recipes outside of class.
These sessions also provide a critical touchpoint for supporting the children's education. Homemade Hope hosts back-to-school celebrations, provides school supplies, begins each session with tutoring and homework support, and helps families pursue academic settings in which children will thrive.
For children in shelters, holidays can serve as a reminder of all that is missing from their life, reinforcing the trauma of their circumstances.
Homemade Hope hosts over a dozen holiday celebrations to ground this season of their childhood in traditions and memories, fulfilling their need for holiday rituals and family closeness.
With Homemade Hope's support, children work together to host celebrations for their families. The preparations are delightful, but the highlight is when the children finally gather their family around a table they decorated and set to share food made with their own hands.
The children's smiles reveal the measure of our success: joy.
Weekly Sessions Also Provide:
HH continues to provide educational support for children, a critical factor to improving their outcomes:
Weekly sessions begin with 30 minutes of tutoring and homework support.
School supplies are provided in the fall and maintained throughout the year for school projects.
HH supports families in pursuing private and charter schools better equipped to meet the significant needs of these kids, setting them on a path to academic success.
HH creates lessons and field trips designed to expose children to the wide world, provide a diversity of life experiences, and grow the schema they use to comprehend texts and school lessons.
The world of homeless children is far more limited than most realize.
Field trips provide an escape from the crowded, chaotic environment of the shelter, expanding the children's world and life experience. Homemade Hope facilitates over twenty field trips a year into Houston, introducing children to museums, restaurants, parks and amphitheaters, farmers markets, and the city's iconic sites.
Whether the destination is overtly education or not, children gain valuable life experience, building a schema that will inform their education as well as grow their vision for a better future.
These trips also restore a sense of dignity and belonging to our city's often overlooked and forgotten children.