Blueprint Ministries

Summer 2020 would have been the largest number of youth participating in Blueprint Ministries youth camps. Every year, the nonprofit normally brings hundreds of church youth to San Antonio to repair homes in some of this city’s most impoverished communities. Last year’s camps were canceled because of the pandemic.

The organization lost a large chunk of its annual revenue as a result, but that’s not what concerns the leader of Blueprint Ministries.

“It’s so important to us because we have witnessed over the years how the restoration of a home brings a restoration of hope to a family,” said DeeDee Sedgwick, Blueprint Ministries’ executive director. “I don’t say that lightly. It’s really important to us to develop long lasting relationships with these homeowners when we go in.”

So Blueprint Ministries pivoted, from repairing homes to caring for the homeowners they’d gotten to know over the years. Many of their clients are elderly or disabled and don’t have access to the internet. For their former clients, Blueprint Ministries staff and volunteers shopped for groceries, connected them to resources, and gave them someone to talk to during the solitary time.

“We did some porch visits,” Sedgwick said. “We would take food and essentials out to them. We had a local pharmacy, Carvajal Pharmacy, here in town, donate baskets full of essentials that you usually don’t get when you don’t have a great amount of income coming in.”

This summer, the camps are returning, but with some adjustments.

More than 900 teens and adults have signed up to attend—similar to the participation in 2019—and they’ll be spread between two locations.

“Most of our homeowners, we hope, will be vaccinated,” Sedgwick said. “That is something we’re not going to take any risks on. Most of them have multiple underlying health conditions.”

In 2020, generous donors and some grants helped keep the ministry afloat. Even so, this summer’s camps will be the most expensive to hold because of the personal protective equipment required to adhere to CDC guidelines.

“We’re anticipating additional cost, which will be loss of revenue for the camp fees that we charge,” she said. “I still feel like we’ll just be blessed. We have been blessed again, mainly through individual donors and foundations. So I hope that will continue through this year.”

More About Blueprint Ministries:

Blueprint Ministries helps repair people's roofs, psyche

The local Christian-based nonprofit and volunteers repaired more than 50 roofs mostly in the near West Side and East Side in 2016.

Listening In: Dee Dee Sedgwick on the home repair ministry that's fixing roofs and lives

Dee Dee Sedgwick used to take student groups to Memphis, Tennessee to repair the homes of the poor. Then she found out what was happening in San Antonio.

What's wrong with housing in S.A. — and how to fix it

At a San Antonio housing workshop, residents had a chance to speak up and identify problems with housing in their city and offer solutions.

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