Family Promise of Kandiyohi County, located in the primarily rural southwestern corner of the state, is the fourth Affiliate operating in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. In 2010, the county had the highest rate of homeless families in the state, despite a population of only 42,000 people.
Efforts began when a relocated Lutheran pastor who knew Family Promise from her previous church began working with local agencies to address the growing challenge of family homelessness. The initial community meeting was organized and held at Bethel Lutheran Church in Willmar, the county’s principal city .
Over time, Junita Cathey and Jeanna Beck provided support and this past spring the Affiliate was ready to open its doors. Brian Rosecrance did the training and Jess Hartfiel from FP Great River and Jolynn Snyder for FP Denver have also been tremendous resources as they Affiliate starts up.
The Director is Chris Castilleja, a Colorado native who has been pastoring churches in Minnesota and neighboring states for the past 30 years. They open with 13 host congregations and a Day Center at First Presbyterian Church. They are well-funded, having a full year’s budget in hand. The initial host congregation was Unity Christian Reformed in Prinsburg.