Bringing 'Hope' to Kinston

Bringing 'Hope' to Kinston

Chris Jenkins, executive pastor for Hope Restorations, speaks to the crowd Tuesday at its first fundraiser dinner. Photo by William 'Bud' Hardy / Neuse News 

Hope Restorations filled the building Tuesday evening at the first fundraiser dinner for the organization.

Chris Jenkins, the executive pastor for Hope Restorations, said he hopes after its inaugural event everyone learns more about the work the organization does and is inspired to participate in some way.

“Our slogan says we're restoring hope one life, one home and one neighborhood at a time and that is what we see ourselves doing,” Jenkins said.

Hope Restorations is a nonprofit organization that provides paid employment, training and other forms of support for adults recovering from addictions and incarceration. The work involves acquiring abandoned and deteriorated homes in east Kinston and renovating them to modern energy efficiency and safety standards.

These homes are renovated to help members of the community in need be able to obtain affordable and safe housing.

“Tonight's event is about community awareness and trying to develop some donor support, inspire volunteerism and other support,” Jenkins said.

The idea of the organization's first fundraiser banquet was brought forth by Davis Basden, an intern with the organization.

“I thought networking and contacting people would be a good way to learn a lot this summer, so I thought of the way to contact the most amount of people while also informing the community about what we are doing,” Basden said.

Basden said he was very pleased with the turnout for the event.

“Our goal was to sell 20 tables of six people and I think after two weeks I had sold 20 already,” Basden said. “The support from the community has been awesome.”

 Dozens of local people enjoyed the first Hope Restorations fundraising dinner. Photo by William 'Bud' Hardy / Neuse News

Dozens of local people enjoyed the first Hope Restorations fundraising dinner. Photo by William 'Bud' Hardy / Neuse News

Guests were treated to dinner, a silent auction and stories from participants of the program like Gregory Dunk.

“(The program) truly came and picked me up and gave me hope,” Dunk said. “Not a handout, but a hand up.”

Hope Restorations began in 2016 with just one property. Since then, it has grown to 31 properties. Twenty-one of the properties are in rental status with the other 10 in various states of renovation.

“There's a uniqueness to our model,” Jenkins said. “Part of that uniqueness is that we're having the folks in one needs group; those who need a fresh start life and paid employment, those are the ones doing the work to meet the needs of another needs group, which is the folks who need affordable safe energy efficient housing.”

Proceeds from the event came from the silent auction, as well as the table sponsors.

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