FAMILY TRANSFER CENTER
Houston Responds has been contacted to assist with sending out the word to churches and volunteers that there is a great need and sense of urgency to support the Houston Family Transfer Center.
The Family Transfer Center intakes families that come to the South Texas border and are legally able to travel to connect with a family member within the United States. They are asking for volunteers to assist with welcoming and connecting these families with friends and relatives in the United States within 24-hours of their arrival. They anticipate only needing to run the centers for 3-6 months.
We are in partnership with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, NACC, and the YMCA to help assist with the two Family Transfer Center locations in North and South Houston.
How can my congregation help?
Houston Responds has partnered with several organizations to assist in fulfilling volunteer needs. All volunteer registrations will be going through the Volunteer Houston website. Please note that some of these postings require experience with Spanish.
Some of the volunteer opportunities available:
Food preparation and serving
Transportation to the bus or airport
Support for emotional needs
Helping them connect with friends and family
JOIN OUR WEEKLY CALL
Houston Responds is hosting informational meetings with partnering organizations to answer questions and to give further details on current needs.
Join us Thursdays at 3:00 pm via Zoom
Did you miss our last call on June 10th?
Download the previous call notes and watch the provided video for more information.
Fill out the form below to receive the Zoom call information to your email.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How many shifts are there per day and how long is each shift?
There are 6 shifts available per day, starting at 7:00 am. Each shift is 4 hours long.
What can you anticipate on your first day of volunteering?
Volunteers will have a description of their job when they arrive before each shift. There will be an overview and thoughtful reminders. We want to be sensitive to what these individuals are going through.
When is the Family Transfer Center open to receive families and volunteers?
The center is ready for intakes, and they will be ready to receive guests on Sunday. We will be keeping you up to date on when the need for volunteers arrives.
When we the address to the facility be released to the volunteers?
A week or so before your shift starts, you will receive an email with the address and any other information you may need.
How many families do we anticipate coming through?
The facility is set up to hold 500 people. Those who get sent to the Family Transfer Center have already been screened and confirmed to have a host family they are getting connected with. We only accept families, no unaccompanied minors, no single males, or single females. At first, the center will only be accepting 2 buses per day, but as we get more efficient, we can add more buses.
Some volunteers are getting a “pending” code as they try to sign up. Is this a pending background check?
Usually yes. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for any issues.
What are the COVID precautions for the families?
These individuals are COVID tested when they arrive. If they are positive, they will be placed in an isolated part of the center. Medical tents and tarps will be there for those who have tested positive for COVID.
What are the security and COVID policies for volunteers?
There will be plenty of PPE for volunteers and visitors. Wearing a mask is highly encouraged, and we will have more information on that soon. For safety, we have hired full-time security professionals.