WHAM BOARD OF DIRECTORS
ANNOUNCES NEW PRESIDENT
Elisabet Iparrea has been named new Board President of West Houston Assistance Ministries, effective October 1, 2018. Elisabet (Lisa), currently with the Texas Business Hall of Fame, a foundation dedicated to recognizing Texas Business leaders for their accomplishments and keeping the entrepreneurial spirit alive in Texas, previously served on our board as the church representative for St. Cyril of Alexandria Catholic Church. Lisa has served on the WHAM board as a director since 2016 and was elected Vice President in 2017.
“I am completely humbled and honored by this opportunity to serve as Board President alongside such an amazing group of board members that absolutely love WHAM as much as I do. I have been affiliated with WHAM since I was 9 years old serving as a volunteer. To see the impact WHAM has had on the community over the years is truly amazing,” commented Lisa. WHAM CEO Rev. Mark Brown said, “We welcome Lisa to her new role as President and know that she will continue to be a tremendous asset to our board through her wealth of experience and dedication to WHAM.”
Lisa holds a B.S. in Psychology and a M.A. in Nonprofit Management from the University of Houston-Downtown. She is married to Adrian Iparrea and has two beautiful girls, Adriana and Adela. Outside of her role as Board President, Lisa is very active in pursuing her passion as a soprano vocalist.
MESSAGE FROM THE CEO
THE REV. MARK BROWN
Mark and Christi Brown
Fall is here, and in this season of gratitude, West Houston Assistance Ministries is thankful for the resources that have allowed us to fulfill our mission to carry out Christ's command to love and provide for those in need. In the year since Hurricane Harvey, we have been very busy! Over 51,000 people, including 16,500 disaster victims, have received financial assistance totaling over $2.5 million from WHAM, and we will continue providing critical basic needs for individuals and families who need our assistance. As we head toward the holiday season, there is still much work to be done, and I ask, "Are you looking for a way to make a difference?" We invite you to be part of the action of our dynamic organization. You can make a difference to those we serve at WHAM through volunteering, donating items to our resale store, or contributing financially.
A NEW DAY: A NEW BEGINNING
There was much to celebrate at our Benefit Luncheon on September 20! We socialized and participated in the Silent Auction and the chance to win many wonderful raffle items before sitting down to a delicious lunch, the presentation of awards, and eloquent speakers. We celebrated how far we have come since Harvey with an inspiring speech by Keynote Mayor Sylvester Turner. We honored Community Builder Award recipient, H-E-B, for their long history of making a difference by helping others and WHAM’s Penrod Volunteer Award winner, Janet Clelland, who has been touching the lives of our clients for 17 years. The audience was moved by the testimonials of three WHAM clients who were not only assisted with disaster relief funds, but most importantly, given hope for recovery from the storm by a caring, compassionate WHAM staff. The luncheon was a wonderful celebration of the cooperative efforts of the community and, as WHAM CEO Rev. Mark Brown pledged in his closing remarks, a commitment to continue the work of meeting the needs of those we serve. All funds raised will go to operating the programs that accomplish our mission: programs that assist individuals and families in need with food, clothing, financial assistance with rent, mortgage, or utilities, and employment and education services aimed at self-sufficiency.
Thank you to event chair, Maria Reyes Bahena, for her leadership and support!
We thank our sponsors for your generous contribution to the success of this event, and we look forward to seeing you next year!
OVER 1100 LUNCHES SERVED TO KIDS DURING WHAM'S SUMMER LUNCH PROGRAM
LUNCHTIME IS FUNTIME!
Summer time, and the living is easy! Those words are true for kids, but for many parents who struggle financially, summer means additional costs of feeding children three meals each day without school-provided free or reduced cost breakfast and lunch. This summer, for the second year, WHAM partnered with the Houston Food Bank to offer free, healthy meals Monday-Friday for kids through 18 years of age. Saint Cyril of Alexandria Catholic Church graciously hosted lunch at the church from June 4 through August 17, and 1188 meals were served over 54 days!
In addition, several Fun Lunch Friday special events were held. On July 27, Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation sponsored a free book giveaway with children receiving a new backpack and 6 new books that each child got to choose to start their own personal home library. On August 10, the kids enjoyed a bounce house, snow cones, and popcorn with radio personalities from Mega 101 providing music, games, and prizes. Celebrating the end of summer on August 17, a visit from the Curiosity Cruiser, a mobile library that is a program of the Harris County Public Library and Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation, treated children to free books and educational activities with their mascots. WHAM provided cake and ice cream and gifts for each child. As summer came to an end, there were many lasting memories of fun times with new friends!
WHAM CARES ABOUT KIDS!
WHAM’s Back to School Program was a huge success again this year as we surpassed our fundraising goal to purchase supplies for 500 kids by raising $10,342! Thanks to your generous donations, we were able to send 530 kids back to school well prepared with pre-packaged, grade-specific supplies and backpacks. Providing students with the necessary tools for a successful year of learning not only relieves parents’ already strained budgets, but also instills confidence and pride in kids as they start school with brand new school supplies. These students are ready to learn!