Hand Up Network has been working diligently to help those going through a difficult season in life.  Our Programs provide a foundation and support system to help those that are serious about getting into a better position in life.  This work is not easy, in fact it is really hard.  We must seek out people that are willing to donate their time and resources to help us do this work as it cannot be done by a small staff by itself.  Fortunately, word is starting to finally get out to the public about the life-changing work that is being done.  It couldn’t happen at a better time as there are so many seeking our help!

Which brings us to a sweet family that we were honored to serve just this week.  Irene Moore has dedicated her life to her granddaughter Christia and she and her husband raised her from an early age. Christia has always been a great kid, never gotten into any trouble and was always a bright light to those that she was able to meet. Christia grew up in Tyler, attended public schools, and as she said was always vocal in support of her Moore Mustangs and John Tyler Lions, CUJO!  She attended Tyler Junior College and could regularly be seen being the loudest of the bunch in the stands.

As time passed, Christia had always struggled with her weight and it progressed to become a significant issue.   Though the weight issue slowed her down some, she was still able to live life to its fullest.  Unfortunately life doesn’t slow down and over time, Christia became the caregiver to her precious Grandparents who had sacrificed everything for her growing up.  She had been blessed and wanted to do all she could to give back to them all the love that they had given her throughout her life.  Then life through another challenge to this family…Christia had a major medical issue occur and her life was suddenly at risk.  She was rushed to the hospital and spent the next 3 months in ICU in a coma.  They determined that Christia’s colon had ruptured and her chance at life would be dependent on her fighting off infection, getting stable, and losing weight.  She is currently bedridden, and the goal is to get in position where she can take advantage of bariatric surgery that could help her to win the battle and get back to living her life.  This is easier said than done and it has caused significant challenges for the family.  A family that also suffered another tragedy when Christia’s Grandfather passed away suddenly.

Today we find Christia and Irene continuing the fight to get Christia back to good health.  Irene has had her own health challenges and utilizes a walker to help her get around.  They don’t have time to be sad and anyone that comes to visit will be met with a hearty welcome and unfiltered love.  Christia has made some major steps towards losing the weight necessary for surgery, but doing this while confined to bed makes it even harder to accomplish.  She must still get to her medical appointments and this is where Hand Up Network comes into the picture.

The City of Tyler Fire Department has developed a love for the Moore Family and they have been called many times to help Christia leave her home to make her medical appointments. Unfortunately, the loss of Irene’s husband, and his retirement benefits, has made the challenge even more difficult. The Porch surrounding their home and handicap ramp has been declared dangerous and not able to be used. The Fire Department and EMS personnel have had to try to carry Christia around the house due to not having access to these vital areas. The Moore Family had reached out to many non-profits, churches, organizations, etc. and were not able to secure help for a variety of reasons. Tyler Assistant Fire Chief and Emergency Management Coordinator, Michael Frost reached out to the Hand Up Network. He explained the situation and asked if we could help the Moore’s out. Yes we could! On December 9, 2019, a Hand Up Network Response Team (HURTeam) arrived early and began to stabilize the Moore’s porch and handicap ramp. Upon hearing about this from Christia, Irene Moore broke into tears! “Praise God!” she said.

We would like to tell you that situations like the Moore Family is rare, but there are hundreds of people just like this struggling to get by and needing a “Hand Up” and support system to get back on their feet.  Many have all but lost hope, while others just have resolved to the fact that no one cares and they just live day to day.  This is a horrible way to go through life and if they know that someone is there to help them along the way, their outlook on life can change in an instant.  That is what we do at Hand Up Network.  Every life journey is unique and thus our Programs are flexible and utilize the expertise of our team and also our Network Partners.  We do not replicate services and we have signed agreements with our Network Partners to ensure that anyone enrolled in our Programs will get the specific help they need, when they need it.  It’s also how we hold each other accountable.  You must be who you say you are.  It is our mantra and we are honored to serve!

A special thanks to Home Depot of Tyler for helping with some building materials and Habitat for Humanity of Smith County for providing some painting supplies.

Hand Up Network received some very nice media coverage for this project.  You can check it out here:

Tyler Morning Telegraph Article        KLTV Channel 7 in East Texas Stories and Videos

HAND UP NETWORK™ is a 501c3 non-profit based in Tyler, TX that has assembled an international team of leaders with decades of experience with a desire to come back home and bring focus to those in need in local communities.  The Network offers long-term programs to people seeking a new season in life and response teams designed to address community issues and emergency response. The Network provides intentional volunteer opportunities for people wanting to provide support within their programs and opportunities to engage via Response Teams.  The Hand Up Network was awarded the Guidestar Platinum Seal of Transparency for 2019!  This is the highest level of achievement possible.