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News & Events

Gateway to Opportunity Luncheon

Past Events


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News & Events

Curious about what's new at Family Gateway? Join our e-newsletter to stay in the loop by entering your e-mail into the box on the sidebar or follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Explore this section to find information on past events.

Several special events are held each year benefiting Family Gateway. Take a moment to see how you might participate in upcoming events, or call us to explore your ideas for fundraising and awareness building.

Media Inquiries:
Contact Cathy Packard, Director of Development, at 214-823-4500 x 104 or via email.

Gateway to Opportunity Luncheon Featured

Our inaugural Gateway to Opportunity Luncheon was featured in My Sweet Charity. Jeanne Prejean wrote,"Family Gateway has taken on a huge challenge - eliminate child homelessness by 2017. To do this, the organization founded by the late Mayor Annette Strauss decided that it had graduated from the days of Celebrity Waiter Luncheons and needed to up the ante."  Read more.

To learn more about our luncheon and to secure your sponsorship please visit our Gateway to Opportunity page.

Campaign to End Child Homelessness Launched

On April 10, 2014 at the Omni Hotel, Family Gateway launched our campaign at the End Child Homelessness Breakfast. Speakers included: Mike Rawlings City of Dallas Mayor, Mike Faenza Pres/CEO of Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance, Ron Stretcher Director of Criminal Justice Dallas County, Brooke Etie Policy Analyst Dallas Housing Authority, Jack Matthews President of Matthews SW, Rev. Dr. Joseph Clifford Senior Pastor First Presbyterian Church, Hunter Hunt President and CEO of Hunt Consolidated Energyand, Hadeshia Thompson, former Family Gateway client, shared their unique perspectives on homelessness and how the Dallas community will come together to insure that each of the estimated 5,000 homeless children in Dallas has a safe place to sleep by 2017.

The speakers' message resonated - My Sweet Charity and The Dallas Morning News covered the event:

Jeanne Prejean's coverage in My Sweet Charityt wasinspirational. She wrote, "Dallas has the opportunity to... set an example for others to follow. But it will only be achieved by a word that was repeated again and again at the breakfast - collaboration. Through the Family Gateway's program, it is possible." Read more here.  

Don't miss Christina Rosales' article "Advocates Launch Campaign to End Child Homelessness in Dallas" Read the article here.

Family Gateway Video, Fall, 2013

Family Gateway's new video was created by Potts Productions and features children and familes from Family Gateway's housing programs. Watch the video on YouTube at:

Celebrity Waiter Luncheon, September 6, 2013


Family Gateway's Celebrity Waiter Luncheon on September 6 at The Joule, chaired by Lindsay Jacaman and Jamie Singer, boasted record-breaking revenue. With a host of local celebrities and Ron Corning as the Emcee, the event was electric.

Our luncheon was jam-packed with excitement, including celebrity waiter challenges, remarks from Lisa Garza regarding her personal struggle with homelessness, words from Executive Director Robert Alberts, and an inspiring video from Garry Potts Productions featuring Family Gateway clients.

We greatly appreciate all our sponsors: JLB Partners, Orix Foundation, Angela & John Crates, Jessica & Marc Colombo, Greenhill Moms 2020, Claire Schlumberger Henry, Rich Moses & Selwyn Rayzor, Tim & Samantha Durst, Lynae Fear-ing, Lillian Hessel, Betty Schultz & Carrie Ford, Jill & Paul Herz, Jamie Singer & Lindsay Jacaman, Deanna Dipizio-Johnson, Rosser & Mary Ann Newton, Cathy & Chris Packard, Terri & Brad Phillips, Catherine & William Rose, Cynthia & Jean-Louis Trochu, Community Trust Bank, Goldman Sachs, Hunton & Williams, Liechty McGinnis, Latitude Technologies, Mid-Cities Imaging and Whole Foods.

Thank you to all our supporters who made this event possible!

First Annual Kids Helping Kids 5K Run at Bachman Lake

The first annual Kids Helping Kids 5K run around Bachman Lake on Sunday, April 21, 2013 was a huge success. Parents, community supporters, board members and Kids Helping Kids high school volunteers put together a successful event that drew teens and families from all over Dallas. After a stirring speech by a child at Family Gateway, the race around the lake began. Children, teens and community-runners all made it to the finish line to receive awards and sit down for a snack under the pavilion.  It was a wonderful way to spend a Sunday morning.

Registrations fees for the run and the 5K raffle raised funds for Family Gateway. The proceeds will go towards purchasing a van for Family Gateway, so that the children in our programs can take advantage of local cultural and educational events.

Kids Helping Kids began working with Family Gateway last year when they designed the very popular Teen Room at the Center. We are grateful for everything Kids Helping Kids have contributed to Family Gateway and look forward to our next event together.


Gateway Apartments renamed The Theodore H. Strauss Gateway Apartments

Family Gateway is pleased to announce that the Gateway Apartments have been renamed The Theodore H. Strauss Gateway Apartments in honor of Theodore ("Ted") Strauss's singular commitment to and support of Family Gateway since its founding.



Family Gateway receives a $25,000 Grant from the Baron & Blue Foundation

We are enormously grateful to the Baron and Blue Foundation for its $25,000 grant to Family Gateway in support of our short-term transitional housing program at the Annette G. Strauss Family Gateway Center in Downtown Dallas.  Through such wonderful generosity, we are able to continue to provide consistent and quality services to the homeless families we serve.


Lara Ashmore, Executive Director of The Baron & Blue Foundation (far left) and Lisa Blue Baron (far right) with Family Gateway staff



Family Gateway a 2012 Beneficiary of the Pat & Emmitt Smith Charities

Heartfelt thanks to the Pat & Emmitt Smith Charities from all of us at Family Gateway for choosing us as a 2012 beneficiary!


   Family Gateway Development Director Randi Steinhart (center) with Pat and Emmitt Smith



Family Gateway receives Homeless Services Agency of the Year Award

We are thrilled to announce that on November 8 at the 2012 Help the Homeless Awards, Family Gateway received the award for Homeless Services Agency of the Year.

Read more about all the evening's awardees here.



ACBL Awards Family Gateway $15,000

The American Contract Bridge League (ACBL) Education Foundation awarded Family Gateway $15,000 in support of our programs. This award would not have been possible without the guidance of Family Gateway Board Member, May Sebel, and the support of the Bridge Association of North Dallas (BAND). Thank you to everyone who helped make this possible!


Family Gateway Receives $50,000 grant from the ORIX Foundation


This fall, the ORIX Foundation granted Family Gateway $50,000 in support of the Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) Program. This generous donation gives Family Gateway the opportunity to provide 168 families with the furnishings, bedding, household items and cleaning supplies needed to start a home.

Thanks to the generosity of the ORIX Foundation, over 200 children will have a warm welcome when they arrive at their new home! The families, volunteers, and staff of Family Gateway extend our deepest gratitude to the ORIX Foundation.

For more information visit

Highland Park Students Perform Artistic Act of Kindness for Homeless Children at Family Gateway

A new uplifting mural painted by Chandler Bjork, Avry Tucker, Girl Scout Troop 277, Gateway children and family and friends adds vibrant color and life to the Center's cafeteria.

Read the entire mural story >
Enjoy a short video of the mural project >

Homeless Veteran and Single Dad Finds Help at Family Gateway

Iraqi veteran, Christopher, never imagined being homeless with his 3-year-old daughter. Thankfully, with the help of Family Gateway and his commitment to succeed the future is bright.

Read the entire story >
Meet Chris and his daughter in a short video >

The Nate Berkus Show Honors Mom with New Gateway Apartment Home Makeover

After losing her professional job, comfortable home and personal belongings, Taylor and her son found themselves in an unbelievable situation - they were homeless. Taylor found Family Gateway, and her hard work, perseverance and generous spirit were rewarded this week when nationally recognized design expert and talk show host Nate Berkus flew to Dallas to surprise her with a beautifully decorated apartment where she and her son can rebuild their lives.

You won't want to miss Nate's surprise reveal and your chance to hear Taylor's story of triumph. Watch The Nate Berkus Show on August 31 at 2 p.m. on NBC.

Learn more about the Adopt-a-Room program and ways you can equip children and families for success by donating furniture, bedding and houshold items.

Family Gateway Welcomes New Executive Director

Family Gateway is pleased to welcome Robert Alberts as executive director. Rob is the third Executive Director in Family Gateway's 24-year history. His results driven leadership style and experience building strong intra-agency partnerships will be instrumental as he leads the next stage of the agency's exciting development.

Read more here >

Mary Kay Volunteers Give and Receive Love Visiting Children at Family Gateway

Volunteers from Mary Kay shared their creativity and appreciation for Family Gateway with a Valentine's Day event for children at the Annette G. Strauss Family Gateway Center. Children and the volunteers had a wonderful time making cards and festive treat bags for the ones they love.

See Channel 5 coverage here >


Ed "Too Tall" Jones and Verizon Inspire Family Gateway Residents

Special thanks to Gretchen Wirth of Verizon Wireless and Ed "Too Tall" Jones for their inspiration and contribution to Family Gateway during the 45 days to Super Bowl XLV.

See photos of Mr. Jones sharing his personal story of dreams, hard work and perserverance below.

(Click on photos to view all)

Family Gateway Featured in Upcoming Super Bowl Slant 45 Documentary

Don't miss this uplifting documentary featuring Dallas children taking action to improve the lives of others and their community. The Down Syndrom Guild of Dallas brought joy to children and parents at Family Gateway with a talent show and both are featured in the film.

See more here >

Watch WFAA coverage >

Family Homelessness in Dallas Highlighted in DMN Story

Families are the fastest growing homeless group, although children and families are rarely seen on the street. Kim Horner highlights the issue and a Family Gateway family returning to self-sufficiency.

Read entire story here >

Texas Rangers pitcher Darren Oliver and his family give a special gift to homeless families

See video of the special day here. >

Family Gateway Volunteer Wins Dallas Cowboys Community Quarterback Award

The Dallas Cowboys understand how important volunteers are the success of charitable causes and reward volunteerism with an annual Community Quarterback Award. This year, Jeff Stager, a dedicated volunteer at Family Gateway won the honor. To reward his commitment the Gene and Jerry Jones Family Charities awarded $10,000 to Family Gateway.

"I would like to thank the Gene and Jerry Jones Family Charities and the Dallas Cowboys for honoring me and Family Gateway with this award. Rather than relying simply on a "feed a man a fish, today" approach for homeless families in Dallas, Family Gateway incorporates a "teach a man to fish for life" approach to tackling the homeless problem. There are many fellow volunteers from my church, King of Glory Lutheran in Dallas and elsewhere, who are integrally involved in helping the miracle worker staff of Family Gateway, and on their behalf I will say to Gene and Jerry, thank you very much - this generous award could not be going to a more deserving organization," said Jeff.

"Thank you to Jeff, the Gene and Jerry Jones Family Charities and all the dedicated Family Gateway volunteers who make a lasting difference in the lives of homeless families with children in our community," added Connie Boyd, executive director.

Former Family Gateway Clients Give Back as Volunteers

Hear how your suport of Family Gateway helped Katina Brooks and Erin Tracey move from homelessness to success, and the ways they are now helping other families with children.

Read entire story here >

Baron and Blue Foundation Awards Grants to 19 Area Nonprofits

Family Gateway was pleased to recieve an award from the Baron and Blue Foundation supporting our mission.

"On behalf of the Baron and Blue Foundation, we are grateful to have the opportunity to support our nonprofit partners in their mission to assist homeless individuals and families in our community," said Lisa Blue Baron, the foundation's co-founder and president.

"In this difficult economy, these organizations are serving more clients than ever before despite the overall decrease in available funding, and it is our privilege to be a small part of the important work that they do."

Read entire story here >

Homeless Numbers Dip, Family at Family Gateway Centerbut More Families Suffer

New statistics show that theoverall number of homeless people in America dropped slightly last year — although the number of homeless families rose 7 percent.

Read entire story here >

Nation's Economic Collapse Triggers Rise in Homeless Families, report says

According to a recent study, record job losses and foreclosures helped push more than 170,000 families into homeless shelters in 2009, up nearly 30 percent since 2007 when the recession first gripped the nation, a government report released Wednesday shows.

While the total number of homeless people on any given night fell by 5 percent from 2008 to 2009, the number of homeless families increased for the second straight year, according to the 2009 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress prepared by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The report is the first comprehensive national homeless study to capture the full impact of the economic downturn. It shows how badly the recession has shaken the stability of families nationwide.

A recent study by the National Alliance to End Homelessness found that from 2007 to 2008, the number of families who move in with others, or who "double up," increased 8.5 percent. "So now I think what you're seeing is that those doubled-up families from 2007 and 2008 are starting to become homeless," said Nan Roman, president of the homelessness alliance.

Marquez said the problem of "doubling up" increased fivefold in 2009 alone. In overcrowded living conditions, children don't do as well in school and families lack privacy, which can lead to greater stress and health problems, she said. "These are things that concern us greatly," Marquez said.

It can take a year or more before a troubled family or individual becomes homeless, so the problem will likely worsen since the economy hasn't bounced back.

Read entire story here >

Boy Walks Across America to Raise Awareness for Homeless Children

Zach Bonner, 12, took a break from his 2,478 mile journey from Tampa, Florida to Los Angeles, California to spend time with homeless children at Family Zach with Family Gateway residentGateway in Dallas. Zach's courageous journey will take 7 months, and build greater awareness about the epidemic of childhood and family homelessness in communities along his route.

Zach hosted a Build-a-Bear party for children at Family Gateway and also walked with children to the Dallas Public Library where he read them a story.

Enjoy local news coverage of Zach's inspiring visit and learn more about his journey below.

CBS News Video

WFAA News Video

Family Gateway Still Helping the Homeless
Dallas Morning News | Robert Miller

DMN photoEven that iconic visionary Annette Strauss couldn't have foreseen the full extent of the homelessness challenge facing Dallas today.

As early as 1985, when she was mayor pro tem, she became concerned about the growing number of homeless families with children on our city's streets.
As a woman of action as well as vision and compassion, she set about raising funds from private sources to build a shelter where parents and children could be served as a family.

Family Gateway exists today because of her ability to motivate diverse groups to work for a common cause. Since its beginnings in 1986, Family Gateway has served more than 7,300 children and 3,800 families. The challenges keep mounting. We are, after all, in the midst of one of the deepest recessions since the Great Depression.

But Family Gateway has much to be proud of. "The key to Family Gateway's success," said Connie Boyd, its executive director, "are the programs in place designed to break the cycle of homelessness through education, counseling, food, housing, clothing, tutoring, medical care and social activities primarily focused on the children."

Read entire article here >

To find out more about Family Gateway, call us at 214.823.4500 or email us.


                          3000 San Jacinto Street  Dallas, Texas 75204

                               t: 214.823.4500   f: 214.823.2475   email