CPS Energy tees off United Way campaign to support SAMMinistries

Annual golf tourney raises $132,000 for SAMMinistries

Roxana and her two children escaped a 14-year domestic violence relationship. With no family in Texas, she turned to San Antonio Metropolitan Ministries (SAMMinistries) for help. SAMMinistries took care of Roxana’s family and provided them with housing at their Transitional Living and Learning Center. Located on the north side of town, the facility is setup like a dormitory with a community kitchen where each family has their own refrigerator and pantry. Roxana said a big part of her support came from residents she met at the center’s community table.

Roxana and her two children, Cesar and Daniela, are one of many families in our community that have benefitted from SAMMinistries over the last 35 years.

“Living with other families was helpful because we were going through the same things,” said Roxana. “Our backgrounds were completely different, but we all sat together and ate like a family. In those times when it’s important to have family, we did,”

Within 18 months, Roxana completed her goal and moved out of the facility after graduating with a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M San Antonio.

Having heard about powerful, life-changing stories like Roxana’s, CPS Energy was proud to tee off its United Way campaign by raising $132,000 for SAMMinistries with proceeds from the 20th Annual United Way Golf Tournament. The sold-out tourney on May 3 at TPC Parkway hosted 70 teams (280 players) from around the community for some friendly competition on two courses, benefitting SAMMinistries and their mission to aid area families. More than 56 sponsors helped make the tournament a success.

“SAMMinistries has been a resource to the San Antonio community for 35 years, providing services to families and individuals who are homeless or on the brink of homelessness,” said Navarra Williams, President and CEO of SAMMinistries. “We are grateful for the support of CPS Energy in our efforts to strengthen San Antonio.”

SAMMinistries, an interfaith ministry and United Way agency founded in 1983, helps homeless families and those at risk of becoming homeless attain self-sufficiency by offering shelter, housing, and additional services. SAMMinistries’ Transitional Living and Learning Center houses 40 homeless families, approximately 150 people, and is frequently at capacity. Of those living at the facility, 70 percent are children. These children attend school, play, do homework and have access to onsite health and wellness resources. SAMMinistries empowers them with the skills and tools needed to overcome homelessness.

Volunteers are at the heart of SAMMinistries mission, as CPS Energy’s volunteers are central to our People First culture. SAMMinistries volunteers provide families with life skills classes such as parenting and conflict resolution, budgeting, and physical fitness. CPS Energy employees also enjoy caring for our community and supporting our neighbors in a variety of ways. We live here, we work here, and we take pride in supporting our neighbors. Last year, our employees and family member provided more than 21,100 hours of volunteer service to local charities and non-profit organizations. We also raised $1.3 million in our annual CPS/IBEW Local 500 United Way Campaign through employee and retiree donations, agency sponsorships and special events.

This year, a team of about 50 volunteers from CPS Energy and SAMMinistries helped with setup/teardown of the event and kept track of scoring on the courses. The event would not have been possible without the tremendous support of volunteers or participants like Keith Balcar, General Designer for Underground Engineering.

CPS Energy employees Johnny Garza and Kaycee Hickman help players check-in for the tournament. Nearly 30 CPS Energy employees and about 20 SAMMinistries volunteers provided valuable event support during the tournament.

“The CPS Energy/United Way golf tournament is a great way to network with fellow colleagues you otherwise would not get a chance to interact with while also benefitting a worthy cause such as SAMMinistries,” said Keith. “It’s an honor to be able to help the homeless obtain self-sufficiency.”

A shout-out to our tournament co-chairs Maria Garcia and Cris Eugster, IBEW Local 500 leadership, all of the tournament sponsors and prize donors. The proceeds, and the partnership with SAMMinistries, puts us in a great position to have another successful campaign this year and to change lives in our community.

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