Crosspoint ended 2012 with a major effort at clearing brush, trimming trees and general clean-up of a vacant lot on New Braunfels. Ten residents and staff completed the task mostly with hand tools, dedication and determination. They transformed a space overgrown with weeds and shrubs and choked with trash into a green space that seemed almost like a park. The effort and improvement was obvious to local residents, several of whom stopped by the project site to offer their appreciation for the work.
Community Resource Fair, October 2012
Crosspoint hosted its 6th Annual Community Resource Fair at The Summit on October 6. The event was held at the recently opened John and Bobbie Nau Library. Sixteen local organizations set up booths to provide over 100 Crosspoint and Alpha Home clients and their families with information that will help them on the road to independence upon program graduation. These agency representatives volunteered a half-day to ensure these attendees will have access to the resources needed to overcome any type of challenge or obstacle when they are on their own.
Community Projects in this quarter included two events in District 1. On September 1, Crosspoint residents and staff traveled to the Oblate School of Theology to work with volunteers from Shearer Hills Baptist Church to lay paving stones to create a meditation garden for the school. On September 22, our team worked with Councilman Bernal’s staff to paint over graffiti near Robert E. Lee High School. During the quarter, Crosspoint residents were also the beneficiaries of a community project by volunteers of the Shearer Hills Baptist Church. This group visited The Summit twice, first to help organize our residents’ clothes closet and then on September 15 to paint a hallway and finish work on the closet. Crosspoint residents and staff appreciate the support from these volunteers and look forward to engaging in more community improvement projects.
Crosspoint looks for service projects for our residents that benefit the community. Crosspoint residents cannot volunteer for any profit-making business, or any activity that involves fundraising, financial transactions, or exchanges of items of value. If your group or community organization wants to invite Crosspoint’s residents, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Getting Crosspoint involved:
- Our primary focus is projects within City Council Districts 1 and 2, but we will consider any project that benefits the residents of San Antonio.
- Nonprofits and informal community groups are our first priority, but we also welcome opportunities to work with city or county government.
- Generally, a project should be something that can be accomplished in a single day’s work (or half day, preferably). Saturdays are best for our residents.
- We provide our residents transportation, supervision, water, and work gloves.
- Residents will not be asked to use potentially hazardous equipment (e.g. chainsaws) or equipment that requires special training, licensing or certification.
- Crosspoint requires a minimum of seven days to approve and plan participation in a project.
During the first quarter, Crosspoint residents and staff continued projects begun last year. In preparation for the Martin Luther King March in January, our residents volunteered their services to complete exterior renovations on the Greater Faith Institutional Church on Martin Luther King Drive. We continued on interior projects there on March 17 and March 31, completing painting of the sanctuary. On March 3, Crosspoint returned to the Denver Heights Community Garden, again under the supervision of Director of Operations Joe Shaffer, to dig in to some much needed spring weeding. During March, residents and staff of Crosspoint's women's facility participated in graffiti abatement work in Tobin Hill, just north of downtown. Crosspoint residents voice satisfaction with these opportunities to give back to the community.
Crosspoint staff also once again took part in the Martin Luther King March activities. Staff helped set up and take down chairs and marched with fellow citizens. CEO, Dr. Kevin Downey was one of the speakers at the Early Morning Worship Program sponsored by the Greater Faith Institutional Church.
The fourth quarter of 2011 saw increased activity in Crosspoint's ongoing effort to support and improve our neighborhoods. As word has spread of the eagerness of our residents to give back, a variety of projects have come our way. In December our residents were invited back to the Denver Heights Community Center to complete fall pruning and cleanup. One of our most memorable and appreciated projects took place in January when five residents provided critically needed labor and skills over two days to the renovation of a church in preparation for Martin Luther King Day events. In every project, our residents have shown great enthusiasm for the work and self satisfaction in being able to give back to our community.
On October 22nd, Crosspoint staff and residents volunteered to participate in another graffiti abatement effort, this time in partnership with Councilman Bernal and his District 1 staff. We covered a series of bridges over the Wonderway Ditch between IH-10 and Vance Jackson. As always, everyone tackled the job with great enthusiasm and diligence. Our District 1 representatives were amazed by the energy and determination every group member put forth, and neighbors came out to thank us for our efforts. This project will continue at new venues in coming months. Our residents find it to be a tangible way of giving back to the community and restoring their citizenship.
On June 11, an 8-man Crosspoint crew made up of Veterans, formerly incarcerated citizens and staff worked four hours spreading compost and mulch throughout the Denver Heights Community Center property. The Denver Heights Neighborhood Association was referred to Crosspoint for assistance by the District 2 Councilwoman's office. The Crosspoint crew worked side-by-side with Association members to complete the task.
On July 12, Crosspoint again responded to a request to perform much needed work in District 2. A 13-person Crosspoint crew spent the morning trimming, mowing and clearing brush at the Eastview Cemetery. The equipment used for the project was procured through Councilwoman Taylor's office. One of the Veterans was interviewed by KENS TV about the work being done at the cemetery and the efforts he was making in the Crosspoint program to get a fresh start.
In April, a voluntary crew of formerly incarcerated citizens, displaced Veterans and Crosspoint staff set out from The Summit to undertake two graffiti abatement projects in District 2. The first involved painting over graffiti that had been sprayed on a new wooden fence and concrete wall at a house on Crockett. With paint provided by the city, the Crosspoint crew returned both fence and wall to like new condition. The second project involved painting over graffiti on a vacant house on Grimes. Such projects allow area residents to see improvements in neighborhood properties and Crosspoint clients get to experience the pride of doing something positive for their community.