There are over 450 children in South Sarasota County schools who have been identified as homeless.

Family Promise of South Sarasota County, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, seeks to help families with minor children who are in temporary need of housing. We will serve families in transition in Venice, North Port, and Englewood.  We are a faith-based organization that enables the community to work together to address the needs of children without a home by providing temporary shelter, meals, and comprehensive services to their family to help them achieve lasting self-sufficiency.  

There are many reasons a family becomes a family in transition. The fact remains, however, the circumstances have nothing to do with a child—and that a child needs stability in order to succeed. Families are the fastest growing homeless population. 


A video from Family Promise that touches upon the mission of Family Promise of South Sarasota County.

WHERE do you provide the help?

Family Promise partners with faith congregations in our community who provide facilities, volunteers, and financial support to assist these families. Currently, 13 churches in the area have committed to offer their facilities for 4 weeks each year, 1 week per quarter. These congregations offer a safe place for families to sleep and also provide meals, enabling families to save money towards their own home while in the program.

Host Congregations

  • Christ United Methodist, 1475 Center Rd, Venice FL 34292
  • Emmanuel Lutheran Church, 790 Tamiami Trail, Venice FL 34285
  • Englewood United Methodist Church, 700 E. Dearborn St., Englewood FL 34223
  • First Baptist Church @ South Venice Baptist Church, 3167 Englewood Road, Venice FL 34293
  • Grace United Methodist Church, 400 Field Ave. E., Venice FL 34285
  • Knights of Columbus, 512 Substation Road, Venice FL 34285
  • South Venice Baptist Church, 3167 Englewood Rd., Venice FL 34293
  • Trinity Presbyterian Church, 4365 FL-776, Venice FL 34293
  • Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Venice, 1971 Pinebrook Rd., Venice FL 34292
  • Unity Church of Venice, 125 N. Jackson Rd.,  Venice FL 34292
  • Venice Church of the Nazarene, 1535 E. Venice Ave., Venice FL 34292
  • Venice Presbyterian Church, 111 Firenze Ave., Venice FL 34285
  • Venice United Church of Christ @ Unitarian Universalist, 1971 Pinebrook Rd., Venice FL 34292

Support Congregations

Support congregations provide volunteer and financial support to host congregations.

  • Christ Lutheran Church
  • Epiphany Cathedral
  • Episcopal Church of Holy Spirit
  • Jewish Congregation
  • Northland Fellowship
  • New Abundant Life Worship Center
  • St. Mark's Episcopal


Executive Director

JENNIFER fagenbaum

Jennifer Fagenbaum received her Bachelor degree from Purdue University in Family and Consumer Science Education and Child Development and Family Studies.  She has worked within school corporations and community colleges, working with high school students and young adults for 9 years while also supervising colleagues.  During that time, she worked to educate individuals in life skills so they could obtain an appropriate education, a satisfying and fulfilling career, and consumer knowledge needed to become self-sufficient.  These experiences helped Jennifer to understand the population we are serving and have provided her the unique ability to educate our clients while providing a strong foundation for our program.  


Family Service Coordinator


I am very excited to come to Family Promise of South Sarasota County as the Family Service Coordinator.  I have lived in Venice for the past 14 years and believe our community is very special.  I started my career in social services after graduating from USF in 2000. My first professional job was with Safe Children Coalition as a case manager working with 0-5-year-old children in foster care. Working their I started building relationships amongst DCF, community providers, and the legal system. Soon after gaining experience as a case manager, I was promoted to the Child Protection Center Supervised Visitation Program as their Program Director and with the Child Protection Team as a case coordinator, conducting child forensic interviews for DCF and Law Enforcement to gather further information on allegations of child abuse and neglect.  In 2005, I had my daughter Ava and within a year of that I gave birth to twins, Tessa and Zoe. I decided to stay home with them until Ava started elementary school.  I started with The Department of Juvenile Justice in 2009 and worked as a case manager in post commitment probation for three years until the contract went back to DJJ. For the past 4 years I have been with Bay Area Youth Services (BAYS), also contracted with DJJ, working with the Juvenile Diversion Alternative Program (JDAP) as the Circuit 12 Supervisor.  I started working as the Family Service Coordinator this November.


Social Work Intern


Patricia Stoff is a candidate in the Bachelor of Social Work professional program at Florida Gulf Coast University.  She is the recipient of several academic scholarships and will complete her degree requirements in Spring 2018.  Before coming to FGCU, Patricia earned an associate’s degree, summa cum laude, from State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota.  Her background spans several fields including graphic design and child advocacy in public education.

Contact Our Staff

PHONE: 941-497-9881

Name *

Board of Trustees

Elsa Dempsey
Board Chair

Charles Denton

Susan Hanks
Treasurer & Finance

Beth Piel

Carole Storch

Tony Babington
Host Congregations

Steve Boone
Vice President & Personnel

Beth Harrison

Carolyn Winfrey

Stacy Pinkerton
Host Congregations

Pastor Allan Mitchell

William Mehserle, Jr.
Public Relations

Barbara Briggs
Financial Secretary

Kathleen Englert