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The Highland Lakes Crisis Network has big plans for 2024 after raising nearly $1 million last year. Top projects for the nonprofit in the new year include increasing participation in the annual Rick Edwards Day of Service, slated for Feb. 16, and providing additional medical services for its clients. 

The HLCN is also set to finish renovating three more apartments for its Transformational Living program, which offers housing to homeless families.

“Over the course of the next year, we’ll have those (units) finished, renovated, and then rotated onto our program,” said Kevin Naumann, executive director of the organization, a network of churches and volunteers that mobilizes people and resources to assist underserved populations and respond to disasters. 

Building up the Transformational Living program will be the biggest undertaking of them all.

“We want to start impacting the entire region,” Naumann said.

Plans are currently unclear for how the HLCN will expand the program.

“I don’t know exactly what it looks like yet, but a lot of what we’re talking about is having a campus someplace with hundreds of living units that are all part of the Transformational Living program,” Naumann said.

Regardless of the circumstances facing the Crisis Network, Naumann believes in the organization’s ability to beat the odds.

“Time and time again, we don’t know how something is going to come together or how we’re going to make it work, but we feel like God is saying, ‘Step in that direction,’” he said.

Other 2024 plans, such as expanding healthcare services for clients and growing Rick Edwards Day of Service, are on the cusp of becoming realities.

Something else Naumann and the network hope to tackle in 2024 is strengthening disaster response. Disaster relief was the principal reason the organization was founded in 2018, following a historic flood.

“We want to put some legs under the coordination of the churches to make sure we’ve got really good communication systems and volunteer systems in place,” Naumann said. “We want to make sure we have all that thought out because, generally, in this area, every five to eight years, we have something big happen.”

The HLCN’s 2024 vision follows a busy 2023, when it served over 200 clients and provided housing for another 11 families, all while feeding hundreds more through its food drives. The organization added The Warehouse to its list of services, providing appliances, furniture, household goods, clothing, and personal hygiene items to clients. The majority of HLCN’s programs count on volunteers to operate.

“People hear about what we’re doing and they show up,” Naumann said of the volunteers.

He is confident the Crisis Network will continue to find new and creative ways to impact the Highland Lakes community in 2024.

“I think God provides,” he said. “It may not look exactly as I have planned, because sometimes God shapes that vision as we go, but the testimony so far says that God honors the churches working together and the mobilization of the kingdom in this area. As long as we keep doing that, it will work.”

A fundraiser for the Highland Lakes Crisis Network is planned for 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 18, at Lakeside Pavilion, 305 Buena Vista Drive in Marble Falls. The HLCN office is located at 700 Avenue T in Marble Falls. Call 325-423-3662 for more information or visit its website.