Tag Archives: homelessness

We Have A Life Threatening Emergency On Our Hands


The Board of Directors for The Sparrow’s Nest decided last week that our top goals for 2012 are to:

1. Build The Nest


2. Build The Board

In my role I spend a LOT of time thinking and dreaming about the what, where, and how we are going to Build The Nest. I’m constantly asking myself, at what point to we decide we have enough money, when is the wise time to just take the leap, do we take a mortgage, do we pay rent, do we wait until we have all the money and what exactly is all the money? What’s the wisest, most efficient, most effective decision?

I had also been spending more time praying for a miracle. I read about other organizations receiving donations of actual houses and I find myself growing jealous of other people’s generosity. I pray that we could receive a miracle like that. I think how much easier this job would be if someone would just hand us the house and the money we need to get started. And then I started feeling lazy and guilty for praying for such a miracle. I believe very strongly that you won’t get half of what you want without working really, really hard. However, I would still very much like that miracle. How wonderful and easy would it be for God just to hand over the keys to The Nest! On the other hand, I was feeling guilty about praying for a miracle. It’s not like we have a life threatening emergency on our hands. 

And then it hit me.

We do have a life-threatening emergency on our hands.

We have the life of a precious, innocent, living, breathing baby on our hands.

We have the life of a scared, confused pregnant young girl on our hands.

One life could be lost to abortion. One life could be lost to suicide. One life could be lost to pre-mature birth. One life could be lost to sex-trafficking. One life could be lost to child abuse. One life could be lost to homelessness. 

Now, I am convicted more than ever to praying for a miracle. Praying for The Nest to become a reality in the next 90 days. Praying for a young girl to hold on just a little bit longer until we get up and running. Praying for the miracle of life within her. 

After reading this, will let us know that you are also praying for a miracle? Leave a comment here. 



“No room in the Inn” takes on another meaning

This has been a heart breaking week so far for The Sparrow’s Nest.

I’ve had numerous calls from young girls who were pregnant or parenting sweet little babies and had no place to go. I had another call from a caseworker still looking for a safe place for his 16 year old client and her 4 month old baby. I looked into the eye of a mother of 13 year old girl who has struggled for months with so many self destructive behaviors. The family just needed a moment of peace.

However, the stark reality is the 3-4 teen shelters in the entire St. Louis metro are full. They’ve started waiting lists again. “No room in the Inn” has taken on another meaning during this holiday season. We’ve started referring girls out of the area. Some are willing to leave what they know. Others can’t imagine being away from their familiar surroundings during this hard time in their lives. Things look pretty bleak.

But, you are hope. And you can make space for even more hope.

Your prayers can help bring light to these dark places.

Your creativity can bring answers to these problems.

Your generosity can help Build The Nest

for a safe and secure place for these innocent babies and their young mothers.

We need champions who will give sacrificially for such a time as this. Please donate whatever you can, $1, $10, $20, $100.

Let’s make space for hope together.



Guest Post from Parent Educator Sonya Burnett

Working with teen moms is always a challenge and never dull. I enjoy seeing them become young adults and growing on the journey of parenthood. So often I see the young parents turn out fine and move on to the next stage of their life. But, sometimes there are the teens that really stand out in their struggle. These teens often need extra support. They come from abusive homes, from families that have so little to give financially or emotionally that they could use the support of a shelter. If you have worked in any helping field that deals with homelessness you know that shelters are extremely full and hard to get into. Imagine being young, pregnant and homeless, having a baby and being put out by parents that just don’t understand that you are still a teenager or realizing that you don’t want your child to witness or be a part of the abuse that you have been subjected to. Imagine being told that there is a shelter available, but you have to leave your high school, neighborhood and friends. St. Charles County needs this welcoming place for young teen moms so they can be supported in their community to become the best parents and citizens that they so want to become. I see it everyday working with teen moms in the STL metro area. Offering resources, but girls stay where they are because the change is too great so they and their babies stay in situations that are not optimal. Some teens may not need the physical building of the shelter, but may just need to know that they have a safe place to go and others like them will be there for support and to lift them up on their journey. An example of the needs I deal with frequently are transportation, emergency formula, diapers, wipes and infant toys. These young parents need the mentorship and modeling of healthy parenting so many have never seen nor have their parents. The Sparrow’s Nest can provide this. I know that Carissa and the Sparrow’s Nest Family are on a great journey to do a greatly needed service in the St. Charles community. Sonya L. Burnett, M.P.H. Certified Parent Educator for 14 years Ferguson-Florissant School District I have worked with teen parents for more than 7 years over my 14 years with the Parents as Teachers program. I thoroughly enjoy what I d