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Pathway of Hope makes positive community change

By Nichole Meloche

Pathway of Hope to focus on bringing positive change to the disadvantaged members of the community in a variety of ways. 

Born out of a program at The Journey Church in Avon, the nonprofit now operates separately and partnerships include the church, Family Promise and Sheltering Wings.

“During Covid, our pastor Tim Parsons encouraged people to reach out even further than our food pantry,” said Tanja Freestone, executive director of the Pathway of Hope. “We put together food boxes during Covid. A couple of people started thinking about ways to help the homeless. We wanted to be more involved in the community, broaden our activities outside of the church.”

Allison Ortiz, Pathway of Hope homeless outreach coordinator (left), chats with intern Ryleigh Lamb. (Photo provided by Tanja Freestone)

Pathway of Hope focuses on bringing meals to the homeless from Avon to downtown. Every Wednesday evening, volunteers bring meals and other supplies to pass out including batteries, flashlights, coats and blankets and a limited number of tents and tarps. 

“The hope is to build relationships with people,” said Freestone. “We want to see them get to a place of having hope. We want them to get to a place of sustainability.”

Pathway of Hope also offers a benevolence fund families can use one time to cover rent, mortgage or utilities for a month. 

Volunteers Roberta Muir and Eve Healy gather donated boxes in the Journey Church’s food pantry.

Last year, the organizers tried to set up English language classes at The Journey Church. They need more volunteers to get the program off the ground and set up class times. 

In addition to The Journey Church, Family Promise and Sheltering Wings, Pathway of Hope wants to make more partnerships with local businesses. 

“We’re looking to make partnerships with those who are helping our community,” said Freestone. “We have lots of ways for people to help. I try to match their skills and interests.”

For more information, donate or volunteer, contact Tanja Freestone at tfreestone@pathwayofhope.us.

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