We periodically spotlight a staff member or partner to help our readers get to know our mission and industry a little better.
This week we interviewed Mike Plog, Director of Community Powered Revitalization at 6 Stones, a non-profit in the DFW Metroplex that is dedicated to providing hope to the hopeless through various methods of community mobilization. TSAHC partners with 6 Stones through our Texas Foundations Fund to provide Texans with critical home repairs.
Below is our interview with Mike.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to work with 6 Stones?
After years in accounting, I wanted to have a greater impact on the people I came in contact with. I went to work for another non-profit ministry, where I was their Director of Financial Operations. God continued to move me into a more service-oriented role, and I was led to 6 Stones and the amazing ministry that happens here.
6 Stones has been making a difference in the Hurst-Euless-Bedford area for more than a decade. How did such a successful organization get started?
Cross City Church in Euless created 6 Stones after a nearby apartment complex was damaged by a fire. The church wanted to help those residents and other community members in need. Since then, 6 Stones has existed to share Hope with the Hopeless.
TSAHC is pleased to support 6 Stones’ Community Powered Revitalization (CPR) program through our Texas Foundations Fund grant program. How does this program make an impact on members of your community?
Our CPR program has a vast impact on our community. For the homeowner who cannot make the necessary repairs to their house, it means a home that is in good repair, meets city code, and is attractive for others to see. For the volunteers, it allows them to do good for a neighbor and, in most cases, helps them realize that they are able to help those less fortunate.
For our host cities, the home repairs help the homeowner, neighborhoods, and resale values. Moreover, it shows the homeowners that they are not just a statistic, but a real person that the city values. This fall, we expect to complete our 800th house.
Tell us more about the other initiatives offered by 6 Stones.
One of our school-based programs is Operation Back 2 School (OB2S). OB2S is a program where those that qualify are given school supplies and backpacks at the beginning of school so those students can start the first day with all of the resources that they may not be able to afford on their own. Last year we served 4,300 students.
We also have Night of Hope, which gives Christmas gifts to students who receive free lunch from their school district. The families are so excited to be able to return to school after receiving wonderful Christmas gifts like so many of their friends. Last year we gave presents to 3,500 children.
LIGA is a soccer program for Hurst-Euless-Bedford students who are not involved in a school sport. This allows students the opportunity to be coached, play games and learn the values of teamwork while being connected with volunteers who care about them. We usually have 200 students athletes per year.
New Hope is our food pantry and clothing closet where neighbors can get food and clothing. We typically serve 18,000 neighbors in a year.
Momentum is a one-on-one mentorship program empowering our neighbors to rise above life’s challenges. This includes topics such as budgeting, career readiness, personal branding, community engagement, and family life. Since we started last year we have had 60 neighbors go through the Momentum training.
Is there anything you wish people knew about the impact that 6 Stones is making?
I want more people to know about us. Whether they need our help, or want to provide help by volunteering or giving (or both). 6 Stones is all about transforming lives, homes, and communities.
What is your favorite thing about the work that you do?
Seeing lives changed. So many people don’t feel worthy, and when they realize that they are valued, respected, and loved, the entire world changes for them.
What’s one thing you’ve learned, either personally or professionally, after the challenges of 2020?
I think the difference between a purpose and a program became clear in 2020. Due to COVID-19, our programs didn’t work like they used to, but our purpose was always clear so we changed the way we did things in order to continue serving people. In fact, our programs served more people than usual because we were able to adapt and stay true to our mission.
What is the most impactful piece of advice you’ve ever received?
My dad used to say, “sometimes you are the bug, and sometimes you are the windshield.” To me, that's a reminder that there will be both good times and bad. The key is to make sure that I am looking to help others during their bad times and helping them get cleaned up and back on their path again.
On the House blog posts are meant to provide general information on various housing-related issues, research and programs. We are not liable for any errors or inaccuracies in the information provided by blog sources. Furthermore, this blog is not legal advice and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice from a licensed professional attorney.