Transformation: Hope for Generations
For years, the Garcia family has lived in West Dallas. Their two children, Matthew and Melissa have grown up in the Westmoreland Heights neighborhood. Mrs. Garcia dreamed of giving her children a better future than the one she had. She wanted a safe place for her children to lay their heads at night. Mrs. Garcia worked hard so that Matthew could go to school, have adventures in their backyard, and remember a childhood of hope and imagination. She made sacrifices working late nights and early mornings so that her daughter would have a stable and secure place to pursue her biggest dreams.
She couldn’t have imagined, though, that the drug house next door would threaten to rob her family of all that she hoped for.
When Melissa would come home from school, the young girl was often solicited for prostitution. Her innocence was quickly taken by the open selling and trading of sex for drugs on her street. For so many children like Melissa and Matthew, opening the door, playing outside, or even a walk to the park could mean being recruited into criminal activity or being hit by a stray bullet.
Several years ago, though, the Garcia family partnered with ACT in a commitment take back their street in a shared vision to see safe neighborhoods where crime is no longer tolerated and hope and dignity are restored. Since signing as a client, Mrs. Garcia can be proud of the transformation she has seen on her block. Her bravery has impacted countless others—reducing crime in the neighborhood and restoring peace and unity.
More importantly, Mrs. Garcia inspired her daughter to take a stand and find the courage to act. After graduating as the valedictorian of her class, Melissa was recently accepted into school to become a dental assistant. She attributes her drive and accomplishments to her hopes to give back to her community. Melissa shares that after seeing the transformation of her neighborhood through ACT and her mother, she is committed to doing good, “transforming communities into safer ones, and brining union among the people living in those communities.”
Melissa is a beautiful picture of the way God is moving in our communities—transforming the neighborhood and building hope for generations. We congratulate her on her achievements and can’t wait to see how God will use her to be a light and inspiration for so many others like her.