Community Connections

December 2023

Letter from the Executive Director

Dear Friends,

As we reflect back on this past year, I am filled with immense appreciation for each one of you who has helped us carry out our important mission. Your support, dedication, and generosity has helped us provide shelter and hope for the most vulnerable members of our shared community.


As you know, in May, 2023, we expanded our footprint into the Baldwin County community and opened our doors to the Baldwin Family Village. In just eight months, we have provided a safe haven for 58 (formerly) homeless women and children in Baldwin County. This remarkable achievement is a testament to the power of community and collaboration. Thanks to your support, nine of these families have already successfully transitioned into permanent, independent housing - embarking on new chapters of their lives. The stories of transformation are both heartwarming and inspiring – from individuals pursuing careers in healthcare and education to young kids finding their passion in activities like ballet and swimming.


As we look ahead to the coming year, I am filled with excitement and optimism. I look forward to ushering in 2024 with renewed enthusiasm and a shared commitment to making a difference in the lives of our neighbors in need.


Kate Carver

Partners in Action

The Dumas Wesley Community Center's transitional housing program, the Sybil Smith Family Village, was awarded a $3,000 grant from Rotary Club of Mobile. Funding will allow the Sybil Smith Family Village to purchase five new stoves for the families in shelter. 


Sybil Smith Family Village has served over 2,514 formerly homeless individuals since its opening in 1999. The 24-month program for homeless women and children emphasizes case management, life skills and behavior modification to achieve long-term success.

Trinity Presbyterian Church's Baking it Forward fundraiser raised $3,000 to support Dumas Wesley’s Baldwin Family Village transitional housing program.


Trinity Presbyterian Church's Missions and Outreach Committee also made a generous $4,000 donation to purchase a commercial grade refrigerator for the Baldwin Family Village.


These gifts will enable the Baldwin Family Village to continue its vital mission of offering safe shelter and essential services to homeless women and children in the Baldwin County community.

Dumas Wesley's transitional housing program, the Baldwin Family Village, received a $100,000 grant in partnership with local non-profit, Housing First, Inc. The recent allocation is the second funding installment of a $300,000 grant to support homeless women with children in Baldwin County.


The Baldwin Family Village combines housing for up to 12 months, life skills classes, counseling and supportive wrap-around services designed to move a resident from homelessness to independence. To date, 58 women and children have been housed, since the program opened in May, 2023

Bringing Christmas Cheer to Homeless Women and Children

Christmas cheer was abundant at Dumas Wesley Community Center's transitional housing program, the Sybil Smith Family Village. Residents were showered with Christmas blessings, thanks to the generosity of our many community partners, including: Dee Dee McCarron-Perciavalle and her Sassy Seniors Christmas Angels; Betty Fain and friends; Roger Cole; Bellator Real Estate - Mobile Office; UMS-Wright Preparatory School; Mobile County License Commission; New Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church; Career Women of Mobile and Nouveau on Dauphin.


“I love Sybil Smith Family Village. I am very grateful to be here. I love having my own space where I can cook and take a bath whenever I want. Christmas was wonderful. My family and I are extremely grateful for our Christmas sponsor. For the first time my kids woke up on Christmas, HAPPY! I would not have been able to make this happen on my own. Thank you.”

--- Sybil Smith Family Village resident

Jumping for Joy!

This past month, a dozen participants in the After School Achievement Program met their positive behavior goal for first semester and earned a free trip to The Factory Gulf Shores. The private event included a fun-filled afternoon of jumping and climbing, holiday arts and crafts and a catered lunch.


Dumas Wesley Community Center's partnership with The Factory of Gulf Shores Academy Program rewards students with free jump passes for good behavior, good attitudes, good grades, kindness to others and personal improvement. Participants in Dumas Wesley's After School Achievement Program and Summer Recreation Program will enjoy free field trips throughout the year, earn individual jump passes to the Factory and participate in special events sponsored by The Factory of Gulf Shores.

Blessings Abound at Baldwin Family Village

Thanks to the generosity of the Baldwin County community, Baldwin Family Village residents were showered with love and gifts over the holidays. Festivities and activities included tickets to the Mobile Ballet, a Breakfast with Santa event, tickets to Wales West Light Railway Artic Express, Christmas presents and holiday arts and crafts.


Thank you to the following supporters for bringing HOPE and JOY to the lives of homeless women and children: Baldwin County Society for Human Resource Management; National Charity League Eastern Shore Chapter; Jubilee Shores UMC; Goodwyn Mills Cawood; Trinity Presbyterian Church; Brooke Kelly family; Marvelous Dee Smith and Sequins and Seasonings; Elizabeth Hammock; Dawn Warren; Karen Damm; Fairhope UMC/Peace and Grace SS Class; Caring Neighbors from the Grove; Karen Evans; Darlings of the Eastern Shore; Eastern Shore Medical Alliance; Spanish Fort UMC; Over Readers Anonymous Book Club; Cunningham Delaney Construction, LLC; Mobile Ballet; Fairhope Middle School; Fairhope High School and the Wales West Light Railway and RV Resort.

(Darlings of the Eastern Shore present a $2,500 check to the Baldwin Family Village for proceeds raised from their Breakfast with Santa event)


"My children and I were so excited to have been invited to the breakfast with Santa event. The food was delicious and filling. We enjoyed fellowshipping with the other families and having the opportunity to eat with the Grinch! I am incredibly grateful for the support provided by the Baldwin Family Village and local community. Your compassion and dedication exemplify the positive change that can occur when communities come together. Thank you for being my beacon of hope for my family."

--- Baldwin Family Village resident 

Local Seniors Enjoy the Magic of Christmas

"I look forward to coming to the SAIL Program everyday. I love the holidays! I love the Christmas decorations, caroling and exchanging gifts with my Dumas family. I appreciate my secret Santa who granted me my Christmas wish. I LOVE my new comforter set! Thank you!"

---Beverly, SAIL Program participant (Pictured in center photo)


Last month, over two dozen seniors enjoyed special holiday events, music, arts and crafts and a holiday party extravaganza. Secret Santas delivered Christmas presents for 42 congregate and homebound seniors. 


A special thank you to: Dee Dee McCarron-Perciavalle and her Sassy Seniors Christmas Angels; The Joseph Project; Kingswood UMC; Jennifer Winstead and Family; Donna Anderson; Andrea Moore; Maria Sheets and Patricia Dunmore and friends. Thank you for making the holidays special for our seniors!

Providing a Hand-Up at Christmas for Local Families

"The Christmas store has truly been a blessing to me as a single mom, because it makes the holidays less stressful. If it weren't for the Christmas toy store my children would have nothing to open on Christmas Day. We are grateful and thankful for all the volunteers and the wonderful donors. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!"

--- Nikki Kitchen, Toy Store participant (Pictured in top left photo)


On Saturday, December 9, 2023, Dumas Wesley Community Center held its annual Toy Store. The event supported 120 low income children from the surrounding neighborhood and the Center’s transitional housing programs, Sybil Smith Family Village and Baldwin Family Village.


Dumas Wesley partnered with local merchants, churches and individuals who supported the Toy Store’s concept of giving a hand-up instead of a hand-out. Toy Store prices are reduced to a fraction of their retail value, making it affordable for parents to purchase toys for their children. Proceeds from the event support Dumas Wesley's Neighborhood Outreach and After School Achievement Programs.


Thank you to our 2023 Toy Store Donors: Advance America; Beard Equipment Company; BEX Beta Sigma Chi Sorority; CHART Industries; Christ United Church; Debra’s; First Year Experience Class, Dr. Karen Peterson, Department of English at the University of South Alabama; Dr. and Mrs. Martin Frank; Hendrix Family; Shay Hollis; Infirmary Health; Infirmary Training Center (Stone Family); Johnstone Adams, LLC; Mr. and Mrs. Earle King; Dr. Eddrice McMullan; Dr. and Mrs. E.M. Moody; Most Pure heart of Mary Catholic Church; Makeda Nichols – State Farm; Mr. and Mrs. Bo Perry; Cindy Rousseau; Salon Emprye (Craig Family); Maria Sheets; SOS Sunday School at Christ United Church; St. Mark Methodist Church; Marion Steinfels; Stillwater Church; St. John UMC; TBS Safety; TownePlace Suites by Marriott Mobile; UMS-Wright Preparatory School; USA Health; Walmart Distribution Center #7067; Alfrida Williams and Women in Missions at South Brookley UMC.

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126 Mobile Street, Mobile, Alabama 36607 •  251.479.0649