Bethany Housing Resident Models “Good Neighbor”

Kimi Zimmerman – Community enCompass

Theresa’s story is exciting to me because it accomplishes exactly what I think ABCD is all about. It opens the door for all neighbors to give what they have been given to make a difference in a community…one life at a time. What a story of hope! and doing life together! and love for our neighbor. Theresa was given hope when a community believed in her and worked with her and made room for her to become more of who God intended her to be and in turn we are watching her do the same in the lives of the children around her.

Theresa Higdon is an everyday hero who understands the value of neighbors working together to achieve great things.  Even while she strives to move forward with her life, she works hard to accomplish great things in our community.  Theresa became a member of the McLaughlin community when she entered our Bethany Transitional Housing Program after a number of homeless episodes.  She progressed to the point of becoming part of our Home Ownership Program and is currently leasing with the option to purchase her home while she continues to work on repairing her credit.

Even with all she’s personally accomplished, Theresa hasn’t forgotten about being a good neighbor.  Currently, she volunteers on the Bethany Housing Program Committee and at the Community Garden of Hope.  In addition she is demonstrating how to be a “good neighbor” to the children on her block.

Recently, Theresa worked with the neighborhood children to help them coordinate a 3-day yard sale.  With her support, the children were able to discuss how to set up the sale, consider how they would split the proceeds of the sale, and engage the customers.  Theresa says, “I was amazed at how resourceful they were. These kids excitedly dragged old computers, lamps, an ancient exercise bike, and bags of clothes—all transported on their bikes!”

In between customers, they happily munched on the sandwiches, pizza, and drinks provided by Theresa, and also made crafts with glitter, markers, paints, and paper to take home to their parents..  Although they only made $12 on their sale, they were excited to see what they accomplished as they worked together on this project.  What they may not have realized is that Theresa was teaching them, by example, the power of caring.

And, what an awesome neighbor she is!  Theresa definitely adds to the social fabric of our neighborhood, as she gives herself to others to develop community and seek the well-being of those around her.

About communitiesfirstassociation
Using Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) methods, CFA transforms a growing number of communities and engages Christians and Churches in their community.

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