Salute to Leslie: Hereafter, Leslie Maynard should be referred to as “do-it-all Leslie.” Not only did she persuade law enforcement to figure out accurate house numbers in Hilltown and provide a map, but organized over 300 3-digit and 4-digit house numbers (over 1,000 sets of numbers), labeled, and batched by street. A huge task, given that any block may have numbers in the 200s, 1400s, and 30s. Did I mention she got a huge discount at Lowe’s on the house numbers? Then she got Little Elm and Oak Point first responders, with an array of fire engines and police cars, to volunteer on a cold Saturday morning (March 22, 2014) to install smoke detectors and properly mount house numbers. They were assisted by seven Hilltown residents who joined one of the three teams. Next, she and Hilltown partners will meet parents at the bus stop to connect with families that were missed. Our hope is that no more emergency first responders will be delayed by difficulty finding an address! Funds that have been donated to the church’s Hilltown account are being put to good use as Partners work side by side.
The Montoya family (the ones whose home burned) is now moving into the future with hope. Not problem — free, but with HOPE! A builder has stepped forward and a contract was executed for a small house to be built on the Montoya lot. A significant downpayment was arranged and now extreme saving is the goal, so that a future payment can be made. Maria is looking for more work on weekends (very experienced house cleaner).
A remaining challenge is that the builder is using evenings and weekends to keep costs down, but expects that it will take 8 months to build. A collaboration with another congregation (and maybe some of us) is underway to bring in welcome volunteer hands to help the builder complete the home sooner. Their family of 5 is in very crowded conditions (welcomed, but stacked). More information later about volunteering as well as a wish list of home furnishings that may be needed. (Keep your eye out for sturdy bunk beds for the boys.)
A U-Visa is in process, with ODIS mentoring both Mrs. Montoya and Perla. ODIS (Opening Doors International Services, Inc.) is at the church on May 6, 2014 for appointments with individuals who want immigration counsel.
Other: The animal clinic (May 10, 2014) and health clinic (priority: get kids ready for school) in July are cooking. Soon the Message Center will be up and information can flow more easily both ways.
Rejoicing is in order!