Houston Housing Resource and Clayton Homes Children Donate New Books to Star of Hope Shelter

Houston, TX, June 24, 2012 --(PR.com)-- Using half the funds that they earned from running a lemonade stand on Lemonade Day, children from Clayton Homes gave back to their community and to other kids who are not as fortunate as them. The Clayton Homes children donated two children's libraries- one to their own community room and another to the Star of Hope Emergency Shelter for Women and Children.

Seven children from Clayton Homes participated in the Lemonade Day program - attending workshops on entrepreneurship given by the Houston Area Urban League and Houston Housing Resource. They chose to locate their stand near Minute Maid Park on Lemonade Day - May 6, 2012 - selling their lemonade to Astros fans on their way to the game. The kids sold about 400 glasses bringing in about $415 in revenue. Despite having their own needs, the kids decided to split the proceeds between charity and themselves-each child taking home $30 with the remaining $205 going to purchase books to donate to kids with greater needs than their own.

Eleven-year-old Ke'Shawna Curtis looked forward to donating the books to families at the shelter. "I hope that they get joy from receiving the books and knowing that there are people who care," Ke'Shawna said.

Throughout the process, the Clayton Homes kids knew that they wanted to give back to their own community in some meaningful way. They focused on books because kids in public housing and emergency homeless shelters can't always take advantage of public libraries. Most can't afford to purchase books of their own.

"It was heartwarming to hear children - who themselves are in financially troubled situations - want to use their hard-earned money to help others," said Amy Goldstein, Executive Director of Houston Housing Resource. "We discussed the situation of children in the Star of Hope shelter, and how they don't have a home the way that the Clayton Homes kids have. Not only was this a teaching moment, but you could see an incredible amount of empathy for homeless kids, as well as an appreciation for the housing that their own families enjoy."

Faye Burnett who has worked at the Star of Hope shelter for twelve years said that books will be a great addition to the facility.

"Whether the children are reading the books on their own or if they have someone read to them, having these books here is a great advantage to the children," Burnett said. "They have a form of entertainment that will enrich their lives."

The Lemonade Day activity is part of a partnership between the Houston Housing Resource (HHR) a non-profit affiliate of the Houston Housing Authority and the Houston Area Urban League to deliver meaningful out-of-school programming in public housing communities that fill-in educational gaps and help families living in public housing address the unique challenges they face. HHR has a long-standing partnership with Lemonade Day and its sponsoring organization Prepared4Life, to create a curriculum that is targeted to the needs and circumstances of public housing residents. HHR secured the books from First Book - an organization that provides low-cost or free books to non-profit organizations serving low-income children throughout the United States.

About HHA:
The Houston Housing Authority provides affordable homes and services to more than 60,000 low-income Houstonians, including over 17,000 families housed through the Housing Choice Voucher Program and another 5,500 living in 25 public housing and tax credit developments around the city. HHA also administers the nation’s third largest voucher program exclusively serving homeless veterans. More information about HHA can be found at www.housingforhouston.com.

About Houston Housing Resource:
Houston Housing Resource, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit support organization that serves those eligible to receive housing assistance in Houston. HHR’s goal is to ready people for work through education and services that lead to self-sufficiency for the clients of the Houston Housing Authority. Donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. More information about HHR can be found at www.hhresource.org.
Houston Housing Authority
Joshua Meehan