The Hundred Story Home: a memoir about finding faith in ourselves something bigger

The Hundred Story Home: a memoir about finding faith in ourselves something bigger

Kathy Izard

11.29.2018

Kathy Izard

Kathy Izard grew up “a little off the grid” in El Paso, Texas. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor’s of Science in Adverting. For the last 30 years, she has primarily lived out of Charlotte, North Carolina. She began her career as an art director for ad agencies, and then opened her own graphic design business. Kathy enjoyed her work, but she felt that, while she was helping others communicate their vision and mission, she was missing her own. At 44, Kathy realized she didn’t know what she wanted to do with her life.

She found that mission after being inspired by Denver Moore, a formerly homeless man turned best-selling author of “Same Kind of Different As Me.” Denver challenged Izard to do something about providing the homeless with what they really needed—a home. She closed her graphic design business and joined the staff of Urban Ministry Center, where she already volunteered, as the director of Homeless to Homes. There Izard developed the only Housing First program for the chronically homeless in Charlotte. From a start-up program, Homeless to Homes became to a $10,000,000 capital campaign that built an apartment complex, Moore Place, named after the man who inspired it.

Izard then used the experiences she had building Homeless to Homes to build the first nonprofit mental health treatment center in the Charlotte area: HopeWay. HopeWay is now has a 12-acre campus and serves both residential and day treatment clients.   

Izard writes about her experiences and her journey in “The Hundred Story Home: a memoir of finding faith in ourselves and something bigger.”

Starting with a single question: “Where are the beds,” The Hundred Story Home leads you on an inspirational journey that ends with over one-hundred formerly homeless people living in homes of their own.

Author, Kathy Izard, was enjoying a comfortable existence when she came face-to-face with the reality that while her dedicated service at the community soup kitchen might be feeding her soul, it would never solve the bigger needs of the homeless population. Confronting the question of where are the beds? Izard realized that she had been called to take on what seem like an insurmountable task—to build housing for Charlotte’s homeless.

Woven together with this uplifting story of a call to social action is Kathy’s personal struggle with faith, forgiveness and fulfillment. In telling her story, Izard invites you to consider rewriting your own. What’s calling you? As crazy as it seems, it may be crazier not to try.