Two months ago the Wichita Falls Faith Mission had a surplus of food. Because of the sweltering heat, they are on a tight food supply, and filling up to maximum capacity. Faith Mission's Marketing Director Becky Browning says they've had a 44 percent increase alone, just in the children staying there.
She says all month they've been at maximum capacity with people even sleeping in the chapel, on the floor, and in the laundry room to stay away from the extreme heat. Browning says, "We've had a big increase in the population that are coming to faith mission for the need to get here and get out the heat, for shelter, for food." They currently have as many as eight children and two women in one room.
Browning says they're not just helping the homeless this summer, they are seeing a lot of people who have homes without air conditioning. Wichita Falls Resident Jennifer Ridgeway says, "They've done me a lot of good. I don't know what I would've done without the place in heat like this. Because I'm not really used to it anyway." Even though their space is really tight, Browning says they'll always find a way to provide for those in need. She says, "We always make room for people especially in this heat. We can't turn people away. We have to be here for them. It's a health issue.
Not only do they provide food, shelter, and clothing but they also inspire hope. Pete Corrales was helped by the mission in 2005. Now he is a volunteer with his own home. Corrales says, "I didn't have no hope or anything. They opened a door for me. And provided a bed and food. And now I got Chandler, my little grandson living with me."
Browning says the fastest growing population they have is single women followed by single women with children. In addition to helping the homeless and low-income families, Faith Mission has programs specific to aid disabled veterans, and those with drug and alcohol addictions.
Browning says about 20 percent of the population in Wichita Falls does not have air conditioning. She says they've given out more than 100 fans to those in need. Faith Mission is serving more than 300 meals a day right now. Browning says they need water bottles, laundry detergent, food, and toilet paper. If you can help, you can drop your items by the mission. Check out their website by clicking this link: Faith Mission. You may also make monetary contributions.