Project partners mission-minded churches with families in need
The mission is to connect “1 family and 1 church for 1 purpose.” This is where the name for 111Project originated.
Churches, community service organizations, and other nonprofit agencies communicate via CarePortal, which connects churches with community partners to provide for the needs of children and families in need.
111Project is looking for 1,000 Oklahoma churches to take the 111Project pledge, which involves prayer; assigning a point person; joining the CarePortal; and offering an annual sermon in support of the project.
Churches large and small can take advantage of the opportunity to join the 111Project. Projects range from clothing items to furniture to food resources, all the way to digging sewer lines and performing home improvement tasks to get homes ready to host children.
Atoka First United Methodist Church was one of several local churches in Atoka County joining forces with 111Project. 111Project has a program called CarePortal that helps churches meet the needs of foster families and other families under DHS guidance.
As a DHS caseworker comes across a need that cannot be met through existing channels, they can post the need on CarePortal. These needs are then sent out to the linked churches. Pastors and team leaders can then send the needs out to their response teams.
Needs may be as simple as groceries, diapers, and clothing or may be larger needs like bedding and furniture. Occasionally home repairs to provide a safe environment for children are requested.
Churches are able to contact and meet the families involved. The aim is not simply to meet physical needs. Churches are able to connect with these families, and families are provided with an opportunity to develop a support system.
Atoka has over 60 kids under DHS supervision. Since the program kickoff in February, 18 CarePortal requests have been made, and all 18 have been met within ten days.
Atoka First United Methodist Church has provided diapers, food, clothing and provided funds for repairs and other needs. In addition, the Atoka Men’s group met one Saturday to dig a trench for a new sewer line so that a child could receive permanent placement in the home.
111Project’s CarePortal helps churches serve children and families in crisis, gives support to foster families, works to reunify families, helps finalize adoptions, and assists youth who are aging out of the foster care system.
The portal works within a system referred to as the Grid, which provides a framework for where and when care is offered. The spectrum of needs includes prevention, when the child is still in the home and the family needs extra support; foster care, when a child might need to be removed temporarily while the parents or caregivers get the support they need to provide a safe home; adoption, when that safety is not available at home and children need permanent residence; and transition, where a child stays in temporary care until they reach adulthood.
The three tiers within the grid begin with tier one - physical needs, like money, furniture, and other resources. Tier two is more relational in nature; this can include hosting meals, offering babysitting, or meeting up for community. The third tier is family. This tier could be offering a foster home or even adopting.
Churches interested in learning more about 111Project and the CarePortal should click here.