Family Promise

We hosted for 3 weeks in 2019

(In February, May and August)

Hosting opportunity in 2020: 

Week of January 19 - Jan 26  (yes we did!)

Week of June 14 - June 21  (Cancelled due to COVID19)

Week of Aug 9 - Aug. 16 (Cancelled)

Here's our crew of helpers for Taco Tuesday dinner
on Feb. 19, 2019!
The guest families were wonderful and all the hosts had a good time too!
The room is ready for our family for the week.
We provide the bed linens, lamp, alarm clock and other amenities for this room (the cots, mattresses and pillows are provided by Family Promise)
At 6:30 am, a van picks the families up  at the church where they have slept. The van takes them to  the Family Promise headquarters in Ridgewood ,where there are  two showers and laundry facilities.. During the week, the adults go to work and the children go to school or day care.  The families assemble at the Ridgewood location again in the evening and the van takes them back to the church where they will sleep. During the week-ends, families use the Ridgewood location as  their home base during the day.


First Congregational Church participates in Family Promise of Bergen County to provide a safe, warm and welcoming environment for homeless working families with children.  Our church has been part of this vital family shelter ministry since its launch in 1986.


Volunteers from First Congregational Church of River Edge, working with the program hosted at St. Peter's Church,  take our turn to prepare the evening meals, provide companionship and support, and act as overnight hosts for the guest families.

Buffet dinner and dining tables set up for Family Promise guests, including a young guest celebrating her birthday

What is the Family Shelter Ministry?

The Family Shelter Ministry works with Family Promise of Bergen County to provide a safe, warm and welcoming environment for families with children who are homeless.

St. Peter’s the Apostle Roman Catholic Church of River Edge  is the hosting parish and is supported by St. Joe’s in Oradell, Temple Avodat Shalom and First Congregational Church in River Edge.

Families are hosted 3 separate weeks during the calendar year and arrive on a Sunday evening at 5 pm and leave the following Sunday after breakfast at 7:30 am.

Each congregation (St. Peter’s, St. Joe’s, Temple Avodat Shalom & First Congregational) is responsible for overseeing 1-2 days during the week to provide meals, family entertainment and overnight hosting. Guest  families leave St. Peter’s at 6 am each day and arrive back at 6 pm in the evening.  They have dinner, prepare their lunch for the next day and sleep overnight in St. Peter's  Parish Center.

Overnight sleeping quarters for the First Congregation Church workers

Who can Participate in this Ministry?

In addition to adult volunteers, confirmation candidates are encouraged to participate in this ministry for evening entertainment (7:30-9:00 pm), serving dinner (6:30-7:30 pm). 

To find out more about this Family Shelter Ministry, visit their website at  Family Promise of Bergen County