Updated: Aug 17
Doy Cole’s work with homeless populations started in Houston about 1990 through his Church and also his involvement in the SEARCH homeless project in downtown Houston.
In 2005, he relocated to New Braunfels. He joined the Comal County Homeless Coalition (HCCC) and became a board member of TIPHER (The Institute for Public Health and Education Research). With the support of his church (New Braunfels Presbyterian), he committed to helping homeless people in New Braunfels.
TIPHER enabled the House of Hope free medical clinic, the Westside Community Center, the Soup Kitchen, and other services for the poor and homeless. In addition, TIPHER built and provided the Family Promise Day Center free of charge. The Homeless Coalition is the primary advocate for homeless people with agencies throughout the county working together to help the homeless. In the last two years, the Homeless Coalition opened the first-ever Cold Weather Shelter and then first-ever Winter Shelter in early 2020 which closed as COVID19 hit.
“I learned early there are many faces of homelessness. The face the public sees so often is the “chronic homeless person” living in the streets. While these are the most severe and in many ways the most heartbreaking, the stats (look them up) tell us that family homeless people including children are the largest group. Family Promise addresses homeless families with children.”
Family Promise came to Doy’s church, NB Presbyterian, and the HCCC in late 2011 to explore the idea of establishing a Family Promise affiliate in our area. Statistics gathered by HCCC and the two local, independent school districts indicated there were a surprising number of homeless children in our community. The abundance of churches provided the service platform to launch an effort to form an affiliate. A pastor at Doy’s church asked him to take a leadership role and in February 2012, Family Promise of Greater New Braunfels was launched.
Sixteen months later, with the help of several committed volunteers, they opened their doors with Stacey Minor serving as the first Executive Director.
In 2013 the effort of the Development Team of Family Promise was recognized through the Chamber of Commerce Besserung and Humanitarian of the Year awards to Doy Cole.
Doy served on many committees, was involved in recruiting volunteers, helping secure host churches, and extremely involved with fundraising. After seven years of board service, including four as Board President and three as Treasurer Doy’s board limit term ended.
Since his retirement from FPGNB, Doy has committed much of his free time to continue his quest to help homeless families through TIPHER, HCCC, NB Housing Partners, New Braunfels Community Foundation, and Family Promise.
Doy Cole is still very present at Family Promise. Current Executive Director, Sarah Dixon, keeps him in the loop and consults him on many issues. He maintains his involvement in the fundraising aspect of FPGNB. He started the Family Promise Endowment Fund that can be found through the New Braunfels Community Foundation.
“My heart is still with Family Promise and always will be. Homeless people are real people and deserve dignity.”