Family Promise and Interfaith Coalition

“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its most vulnerable members.”

No one should be without a home or have food insecurity

Are you someone who would love to cook a hot meal or provide the ingredients for a meal-kit for a family or do a non-contact delivery of food to families?

Family Promise of Whatcom County is an Interfaith Coalition housing program that helps homeless families get out of homelessness and poverty and into permanent homes.

First Congregational Church of Bellingham and the Red Cedar Zen Community partner four times a year to provide hot meals and meal kits to families in the program.

Below are our service weeks in 2021. There may be 4-5 families to serve each week, so we will need a lot of volunteers, old and new!

(Please note: You do not have to participate in all service weeks; volunteering time is very flexible.)

Our service weeks in 2021:

  • February 8 – February 15
  • June 28th – July 4th
  • August 23 – 30
  • November 22 – 29

If you would like to learn more about volunteering or have questions, contact Barbara Johnson at

More about the Interfaith Coalition and Family Promise

Red Cedar Zen Community & Family Promise

Since the spring of 2018, RCZC sangha members have volunteered many hours as part of Family Promise to help homeless families in Whatcom County find stable housing. The success rate of these effort is that 85% of the families have found stable housing – and remain in a safe and secure situation.

Who Is Family Promise of Whatcom County?

Family Promise of Whatcom County was initiated by Interfaith Coalition and began in September 2016 at a community meeting in downtown Bellingham, where over 200 people from 34 faith communities gathered to explore this new option to provide a response to the growing crisis of homelessness in Whatcom county.

“Passionate” and “determined” are two words that accurately define the volunteers who work to recruit and train Host and Support Congregations, raise funds, and communicate the mission of the program. It is an enthusiastic and energized group, helped enormously by volunteers and member congregations.

“You saved my life and job. I don’t know what I would’ve done without you all.”
— Family Promise of Whatcom County guest, parent

Why Family Promise?

We believe no child should experience homelessness. As there are too many families living in the margins in Whatcom County, we launched our Family Promise Affiliate in 2018 in order to help more families get out of poverty and into homes in a cost-effective way.

Families get a place where they can stay together as a family, they also get home-cooked meals and connections to the community. During the day, families go to the Day Center where they take showers, do laundry, kids get transported to their own school and small children can play in a safe environment. Families also have individualized case management to secure permanent housing, jobs, childcare, and other needed resources to make them financially independent. Our success rate is 85% in families finding stable housing – and staying there.


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