A Warm Welcome Home


What began as an extra safety measure implemented by our team has become an atmosphere changing act. What simple thing could have this much impact? Meeting our kids at the bus stop.

Between the bus stop and The Rose Community Center are a few busy streets and major intersections. To ensure that our kids were reaching The Rose safely, our staff leaders Darrion and Tierre decided to surprise the kids at the bus stop and walk with them over to The Rose on the first day of our fall programming in early September. The first day they met the kids at the busy stop, the kids were a little shocked, but the shock gave way to excitement as they were welcomed gladly by our staff.   

The second day of school, Darrion and Tierre again went to the bus stop and waited for the kids to arrive. It only took a few days before the kids begun to expect to see Darrion and Tierre when they got off the bus and they waited with excitement and anticipation for their stop.

For children who are raised in poverty, many things are transient. Their home many not be consistent, having food on the table may not be a given, and having parents there to welcome them home from school may be a foreign concept. By Darrion and Tierre always being at the bus stop when they arrive, there is at least one consistent thing in their day. This builds trust with the students we serve and they know that our staff are people they can count on.

As well as building trust, meeting the kids at the bus stop has increased the moral of the students which has increased their excitement for the programming we have for them after school. Having someone waiting on them when they get off the bus reminds them that they matter and that they are loved, both of which are core values of Behind Every Door.  

Posted on September 13, 2018 .

A New Dream: College


Have you ever seen a glimpse of a possible future and it’s changed your whole outlook on where you are?

Five of Behind Every Door’s on-site leaders endeavored to inspire a group of students from their after school programming by showing them a new world beyond what they had previously seen. What was this new world? College.

Darrion Lewis (Community Director at The Rose) and 4 other Behind Every Door on-site leaders took 19 high school students from our 3 communities to Darrion’s alma mater, Langston University in Oklahoma. Langston is a part of the Historically Black College and Universities network of colleges that were established before Civil Rights Act of 1964 with the intention of primarily serving the African-American community.

Although Oklahoma doesn’t seem that far away to some of us, the 245 mile road trip from Dallas proved to be quite a feat for most of our students, some of whom had never been outside of Dallas. Some students saw mountains and hills for the first time in their lives, and some marveled at the cows in the fields along the highway.

Samandre, a 15 year old freshman boy, had never been out of Texas before attending this trip. In fact, the only place he had ever been besides Dallas was San Antonio. After years of struggling with grades and getting in trouble in school, Samandre has recently found a determination to succeed, as he stays busy with his school work, football practice, and working 30 hours a week at Kroger. Darrion and his colleague Cierra Cotton decided Samandre was the kind of student that would greatly benefit from seeing how other students like him were going to college.

When arriving at Langston, Darrion (Community Director at The Rose) took the kids on a tour of the university. He was able to give them a unique perspective as he was a student there himself for his college education and was also quarterback of the football team. Having this personal connection to the university helped to inspire our kids and helped to break down the mindset that attending college is impossible, which is what most of our students think.  

After the tour of the university, the students got a tour of the athletic facilities and got to meet the head coach of the football team. This unique experience made watching the football game that night more personal for the kids. They were in awe that they were watching a game on the exact field on which Darrion played, cheerin on the Langston Lions! It wasn’t just athletic dreams being built during the game, but also band, color guard, and drill team aspirations. A high school senior girl from The Rose was inspired by the band and shared that she dreamed of joining the school band if she went to a college like Langston.

When the tour was over and the group was safely back home in Dallas, Samandre was hopeful and encouraged. He told our staff leaders, “I really, really enjoyed myself. It was just a really good day. I’m really thankful you took us, and that you let us ride in the suburbans. I felt so cool.”  

Darrion Lewis, Langston grad and Behind Every Door Community Director, shared his thoughts on the day:

“The intent of this trip was to expose our high school students to college, while also encouraging the students to take ownership in the experience, and to walk away seeing themselves one day attending college. Along with seeing the campus and attending the football game, our students were able to speak with campus leaders, ask questions, and take pictures. This trip meant the world to the BED Staff because God used us to affirm the students dreams of going to college.”

Posted on September 13, 2018 .

Behind the Doors of Spence Middle School


Behind Every Door has cultivated strong relationships with the communities we serve and with the children, youth, and parents who live there. Even still, we began to wonder how we could further connect with them. This answer came in an opportunity we were provided with last week.

Our staff leadership from The Rose Community Center were invited behind the Spence Middle School doors to meet with the new principal there, observe lunchtime, and see the kids who attend our Kids Club after-school program.

After the initial responses of “Wait, you’re not supposed to be here!” the kids were thrilled to see Darrion and Tierre in their school hallways and to get to spend time with them at lunch.

A pivotal moment for our staff was when they got the chance to talk with the campus security guard and hear that one of the greatest threats to the kids right now are suicidal thoughts. We learned that about two years ago a middle school boy committed suicide, and since then, the school has been searching for added support and healthy relationships to be established and fostered. Darrion Lewis shared that “We are hoping to start those efforts in building relationships with the children. This is only the beginning; however, we are excited about the limitless possibilities of what God is going to do.”

When we say we strive to know the stories behind every door, we mean EVERY door, including the door of Spence Middle School. This newfound partnership has endless potential and we are so excited to see where it leads.  

Posted on September 13, 2018 .

Prayer Needed for Village Homes Community

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A Request for Prayer for the Village Homes Community - Our summer has come to end and though we shared a lot of fun moments with our families and their children it was not without challenges.

Village Homes has been labeled an “at risk,” property by the City of Dallas, which simply means if there is not significant improvement in the areas of safety and living conditions, we could possibly be closed and thousands of people including kids and the elderly will be displaced. In the the mist of trying to turn things around, Village Homes saw three murders between June and August. While our kids are resilient, no child should have to live in a place where gun shots are routine and death is your neighbor.

Though we are soliciting your prayers it is not from a hopeless place. We had a wonderful back to school event, where we unveiled our “That’s Trash Bro” liter campaign, we played games, ate a bunch of snow cones, passed out school supplies and most importantly prayed for our kids that God would protect and guide them through a successful year! 

For not the best of reasons, many eyes are watching Village Homes. “But God is our refuge and strength, our present help in trouble.” we are believing for such a transformation, that eventually we will say of the watching eyes that “their eyes were watching God!”

Thank you all for walking with and praying for us.

Prayer request shared and written by Village Home's Community Director, Kea Westbrook. 

Posted on August 21, 2018 .

Summer Series- Washington D.C. Trip

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Here is a recap of this year's trip to Washington D.C. told by Village Home's Community Director, Kea Westbrook- 

Summer 2018 did not disappoint, a specific highlight was being able to accompany a group of students to Washington D.C. We traveled to D.C. with 23 teenagers from across the three Behind Every Door Properties with the specific purpose to educate, inspire and have lots of fun!

There was so much to learn and from which to be inspired from the African American Museum to the Museum of the Bible, our students learned about their history both culturally and spiritually. Our adventures led us on a tour of the national mall where we were able to spend time at the Lincoln and King memorials. We visited the home of Frederick Douglas and toured the home of our U.S. Presidents. Yes, our students from Dallas TX were in the White House! Madam Tussaud’s wax museum allowed us to get close to all of the U.S. presidents and some of our favorite celebrities. And the National Harbor was a great place for some of us to conquer our fear of heights on the Ferris wheel, eat good fun and enjoy getting to know each other better.

Traveling to D.C. was a special gift that provided new experiences and new possibilities for our teens! After inventorying what impacted them the most, almost every adventure made it on at least one person’s list. However, an extra special moment for the majority was the privilege of having Deborah Roberts, an African American female who now works in the Department of Transportation, come share her testimony with us. Her beginnings were like many of our students, and she explained how she was able to overcome what seemed like insurmountable odds; Faith, her love for reading and with the right people around her, she persevered. Mrs. Roberts personal touch helped reach the hearts of some our students; they shared how she inspired them because of her confidence and because she was just like them; she infused hope.

Going to Washington was a journey that began this summer but the full weight of its’ benefits is still being measured. Every time we speak with our students more nuggets are revealed about just what that trip meant to them. We had devotion every morning and a debrief every night, prayerfully, we inspired habits of personal quiet time and healthy communication. There is so much more to tell, but I want to take the time to say thank you to every one that supported and prayed for our transformative trip, our gratefulness is more than what can be expressed.

THANK YOU - Behind Every Door Board of Directors for approving the trip; Stand Together for our special family dinner Thursday night in D.C.; Eddie Adesodun for designing our Roots to Routes logo (they were a great witness tool) and to PXP Solutions for getting our shirts printed on time; Deborah and William Roberts for your love and continued support; all the parents for entrusting your kids in our care (that means so much)!

Again, we set out to educate, inspire and have lots of fun. Mission accomplished and to God be the glory.

Posted on August 21, 2018 .

Summer Series- Tech Camp

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This summer, we are collaborating with an organization called Techie Factory that brought weekly technology camps to our Roseland Community Resource Center, (“The Rose”) so the kids we work with can access educational camps right in their apartment complex!

Techie Factory is an experience based, educational program for children to learn about technology while having fun and enjoying themselves. Their focus is reaching the up-and-coming generation with technological advances through fun and exciting experiences.

So far this summer, Techie Factory has brought the Fun with Coding and Circuit Boards Camp (June 11th-15th) and Innovation through Creative Design and 3D Printing Camp (June 18th-22nd) to The Rose for our kids to learn and enjoy. Additionally, we have students attending camp at the Rose this week to learn 2D Design!

We are so fortunate to be blessed with the generosity of Mess Wright, a staff member at Techie Factory, who made technology summer camps a reality for students who attend our programming regularly. Mess personally raised almost $8,000 in funding to provide our kids the Techie Factory camps she teaches. We could not be more grateful for how gracious she has been to our students!


Follow us on social media to see what our kids are up to at camp this week:

Instagram: @behindeverydoor

Facebook: Behind Every Door (like our page)

Twitter: @behindeverydoor

Posted on August 1, 2018 .

Urbanade Update


We are pleased to share with you some recent publicity we have received through the success of our amazing entrepreneurs and their creation of Urbanade! 

Urbanade was featured in the recent print edition of Preston Hollow People, as well as on the Park Cities People website. The article includes Urbanade in a summer round-up, sharing with the Park Cities community fun ideas to take part in this month. In total, this placement garnered a total viewership of 22,620+.

Read our spotlight here- 


Posted on June 6, 2018 .

Urbanade Lemonade


This May the students in our Entrepreneurial Program have the great privilege of participating in Lemonade Day in Dallas for the second year in a row. Lemonade Day is a program where youth have the opportunity to experience entrepreneurship by setting up lemonade stand businesses during their city's community-wide Lemonade Day.

On Saturday April 28th, our talented entrepreneurial team (made up of students Samuel, Daisy, Kxzari, and Keisei who attend our Kids Club programming consistently) attended an invitation-only competition at Northpark Center to compete against other local entrepreneurship teams. They showcased their signature lavender lemonade, cleverly called Urbanade, which was made in collaboration with East Hampton Sandwich Co. Not only was this day an incredible learning experience for our talented entrepreneurs, they took home the grand prize, the title of Best Tasting Lemonade!

This team of four talented students competed last year in the Lemonade Day competition and were disappointed not to place in any category. Our kids showed their resilience and were not deterred from putting in hard work all year to plan and be prepared for competition this time around. Fortunately, those efforts paid off this year!

Starting in January this year, they begin learning about budgeting and planning. With each student taking ownership of their specific role, the team worked together as a high functioning unit. The team then met with East Hampton Sandwich Co owner, Kyle Brooks, to choose their flavor of lemonade - lavender!

When asked what they learned the most from this experience of preparing and then competing, Keisei said that she grew the most in getting up the courage to go and talk to people, introducing their product and not being afraid to speak with new people. Kxzari shared that she, and the team, learned how to talk things out to work together better.

This Saturday, May 5th, the team has a chance to showcase their award-winning lemonade yet again at East Hampton in Snider Plaza! The Urbanade entrepreneurial team will be at the East Hampton restaurant from 11am - 5pm to sell their delicious lemonade! Come on by and taste it for yourself!

Behind Every Door is proud to be a part of this experience with our students with East Hampton Sandwich Company through Lemonade Day. Learn more at https://behindeverydoor.org/urbanade.

Posted on May 4, 2018 .

Kids Fine Arts Showcase


Saturday was filled with creativity, performances, and fun as kids from all three communities we serve through Behind Every Door came together to display their work at our first ever Kids Fine Arts Showcase!

Built on creativity, discovery, and imagination, the Behind Every Door enrichment program, a component of our out-of-school-time kids club, seeks to help students explore their creative side through art, dance, cooking, science/technology, and more.

After working hard on artwork and musical performances all semester, Kim Elmore (Enrichment Coordinator) gave the children a chance to display their work and perform at our Community Center in Roseland Townhomes. During the Showcase, one room was converted to an art gallery with display boards featuring children’s artwork from drawings and paintings, to photography and sculpture, and the PEROT museum brough tech trucks to build and launch rockets.

To kick off the showcase, kids from Village Oaks starred in three performances.

Performing first was a group of teenagers who wrote their own Musical Bible Verses presentation:

Up second, was a performance of the books of the New Testament:

Lastly, a group of students performed an incredible dance number:

The whole showcase was a huge success incorporating and displaying all aspects of the enrichment program and giving the attendees of our kids club a way to showcase the results of all the hard work they have put in. In closing the event, Chris Griffin (Assistant Community Director) said, “Our kids are dedicated. Our kids are special. They put in the work day in and day out. They have something special inside them and it’s our job to draw it out.”






Posted on April 16, 2018 .

Valentine's Day Lunch at Village Oaks


Love filled the air as members of Village Oaks Apartment community gathered together on Wednesday, February 14th for a Valentine’s Day lunch, held on site at the community center. Spirits were high as joyful memories were shared between senior adults who have called this place home for many years.

Reminisces of past neighbors were recalled with smiles. Murmurs of “Do you remember Jack who had all those plants? His daughter was so sweet!”, followed by, “Oh, yes! I hadn't thought of them in a while!” interlaced conversations about current happenings.    

The occasion was special for those in attendance and was a delightful time of fellowship. Knowing that many may not be spending Valentine’s day with their special someone they have in years past, the comradery of being with their long time friends lifted corners of mouths into smilies.

As Behind Every Door, we exist to bring the fullness of the love of Jesus to transform lives in underserved neighborhoods. We believe that this love is: patient, kind, does not envy, does not bost, is not proud, is not rude, is not self seeking, is not easily angered, and keeps no records of wrong. We believe this love does not delight in evil, but rejoices in the truth, that it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. The love of Jesus never fails (1 Corinthians 13:4-8).

It is this love we strive to foster throughout all communities we serve, from the kids all the way to a special Valentine's Day lunch for the senior adults of Village Oaks.   




Posted on February 21, 2018 .