TEMPLE, TX — The phrase, "You belong here," is written in white on an electric blue front door, and serves as the mantra for the 411 House, a local nonprofit in Temple.
The home is a safe place for Temple’s youth to connect, share positivity and gives young men an alternative spot to hangout.
Branden Mayse, a volunteer at the house, grew up on the south side of Temple. Now, over 30 years later, he is giving back to the community that taught him so much.
“Being a mentor is more of, I can sit with you and I can listen to you and then I can tell you what’s right and what’s wrong,” he said.
He met Kim White, the founder and executive director of the 411 House, three years ago and shares her love for providing a safe place for our youth.
“We want them to dream, discover and change the world to the glory of God,” White explained. “We truly believe that our kids can do that and are capable of that.”
The nonprofit opened its doors back in 2019 and before the pandemic, the home provided in-person opportunities to 50 young men. To adapt, White says she makes goodie bags to drop off to the boys’ homes as a way to check in on them.
In a normal year, the nonprofit offers everything from meals to therapy sessions and even in-house haircuts.
“When we get to stick with them and continue to show up for them and show them that we care,” she said. “Then you see that softness modeled back to you”
It’s safe to say the 411 House is a home away from home for local boys. It's a home one local mother is thankful for.
“It's important that they see different people out there doing different things, different fields of work,” Timlicia Robinison, a mother whose child goes to the 411 House, said. “Knowing that Temple is not the only town, there's a whole world out there for you to see.”
Even though they all come from different walks of life, they can all find common ground at the 411 House.
”Some like foosball, some love basketball so [they’re is] a lot of difference, but it’s a togetherness," said Mayse.
The nonprofit is looking for male mentors to stand by the students. White also says they’re looking for volunteers to work events, which is a once-a-month gig, as well as someone to coordinate meals, which may be a one time job.
To find more information about the nonprofit or volunteer opportunities, you can visit the 411 House’s website.