calendar March 8, 2021 in Advocacy, Faith in action, News

’I Was Homeless, Now I Help Make Tiny Homes for People on the Street’

“I was homeless from 2008 to 2013,” says Jacqueline Chapman. Today the active Welcome Church leader is advocating for the needs of homeless people as vice-president of the board of the Sanctuary Village project, which will develop tiny houses in Northeast Philadelphia to house people now living on the streets.

Jacqueline shares her story in a “My Turn” article in Newsweek, published March 8.

“When I was hungry on the street and I had eaten food, I began to think about whether I was feeding the spiritual part of my body,” she says. “I became closer to The Welcome Church as I started going more to their bible study classes as well as appreciating the space and food they offered.” With support from her casework and pastors Violet Little and Schaunel Steinnagel, Jackie found an apartment and a job and is now deeply involved in Welcome Church and the tiny house project.

Jacqueline Chapman, center, at the 2017 Synod Assembly with Welcome Church pastors Schaunel Steinnagel, left, and Violet Little. [courtesy: Jacqueline Chapman]

“It’s important to treat people the way you want to be treated. I want to do the right thing by people. I’ve been homeless, and I know what it is to go a day without a meal. I had to find people who would support me as I transitioned out of homelessness, and are still there for me now. That’s a good feeling, so I want to do the same thing for others now,” Jackie writes.

“I am trying to be there for others, to help them know that somebody still loves them, in spite of what is happening in their life. I feel very rewarded doing this, I really do.” ◼︎



Read the full article