Welcome House Ministry
Launched in 2015, Welcome House Raleigh (WHR) is a temporary housing ministry for refugees and immigrants who do not have a place to live upon arrival to the United States. Located in Raleigh, North Carolina, it is a safe home supported by a team of vetted volunteers who offer hospitality, settlement assistance and assimilation bridges into the local community. Our main goal at WHR is to share the love of God in Christ Jesus through the ministries of hospitality and friendship.
Welcome House Raleigh is a collaborative partnership between the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of North Carolina (CBFNC), refugee agencies and partner churches, as well as individuals that provide a hospitality ministry to vulnerable neighbors in the Raleigh area. Since being established, WHR has served over 400 refugee and immigrant guests.
In the summer of 2020, the CBFNC Coordinating Council adopted the Welcome House Ministry as a new missions program of CBF North Carolina to expand the model of Welcome House Raleigh in contexts and communities throughout the state.
The Welcome House Community Network (WHCN) was formed consisting of the housing ministries being established all across North Carolina to address the temporary housing needs specific to each individual community. It is an ever-growing, collaborative ministry between CBFNC, CBF Field Personnel Marc and Kim Wyatt, local individuals and partner congregations to provide hospitality ministry to vulnerable neighbors in local communities.
Whether in a large urban area or rural community, the goal of WHCN is to serve the vulnerable and marginalized in every city and town in North Carolina and beyond. Working with partner congregations, the vision is to provide home to those who have lost theirs, welcome to those who are unwelcomed and hope for those who desperately need it.
Does your church have a parsonage or property no longer being used? Are you interested in starting a Welcome House? Check out some of our “getting started” guides below:
Welcome House Best Practices Video
Welcome House Best Practices Slides
When you’re ready to continue the conversation and explore how to get started, contact Marc and Kim Wyatt, CBF field personnel, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Welcome House Community Network Grants
Through funding from CBFNC, grants are available to churches seeking to establish a Welcome House ministry that addresses the needs of the vulnerable and housing insecure in their communities . Learn more about WHCN Grants here.
The Welcome House Raleigh Model
WHR is a five-bedroom, three-full-bathroom house owned by Crabtree Valley Baptist Church (CVBC), which has bed space for 12 persons. It is not zoned as a shelter but is a guest house of CVBC. There is no sign identifying the ministry. All guests are referrals from local agency partners, churches and mosques. The current location is the third since beginning November 2015. We have hosted over 400 guests at Welcome House to date.
Guests are clients of the partner agency, which provides safe and loving space for individuals and families in transition to permanent housing. Typically, guests live together for up to six weeks while the partner agency searches for long-term affordable housing.
When permanent housing becomes available, we work together to furnish it, including stocking the kitchen with culturally appropriate groceries. Finally, we seek to help orient our new friends as they discover their new American neighborhood. Our main goal is to share the love of God in Christ Jesus through the ministries of hospitality and friendship.
Volunteers from local churches and civic organizations are vital. These special neighbors are our immigrant guests’ first American friends. Prayerfully and intentionally, that friendship continues to grow in the grace and love of God.
The experiences of several WHR guests have been captured by Cooperative Baptist Fellowship video production, which are available here, here and here.
To learn more, contact CBF Global Field Personnel Marc (910.632.4774) or Kim Wyatt (910.632.4181) or email them here.