In this section: Leadership Development | Community Engagement | Family Engagement

Seeking change with residents and community institutions.

Prayer Walk


We work alongside churches to help them discover their own strengths and assets and to connect them to the broader community, outside the walls of their church. We believe that churches have a responsibility to evangelize, disciple and nurture people in the world. Yet, we also believe that it is the responsibility of the church to love their neighbor and their neighborhood. Often, communities are developed by people from outside who bring in resources but they do not truly listen to the community. We believe the church can play a part in listening to residents’ stories and working together to create positive change.


  • Developing a GED Site in East Waco
  • Cleaning up the neighborhood through beautification days or mowing vacant lots in North Waco
  • Mentoring within schools all over Waco


Neighborhood Associations

Neighborhood Associations are located all over the City of Waco and the ones we work with are bringing relevant information to the community and working together to develop their neighborhoods. We believe that neighborhood associations can play a vital role in the community because they are made of up individuals who live, work and worship right in the neighborhood. They know what is happening within their neighborhoods and they are able to dialogue and then take action to address change.


  • Near Northside Plan
    • Initiative of the Chamber of Commerce for each neighborhood to have its own distinct plan
    • Assessment of the Area
    • Infrastructure
    • Marketing of the area
  • Carver Neighborhood
    • Economic development
    • Education
    • Infrastructure & Beautification
    • Housing
  • Northeast Riverside
    • In the process of holding Community Input meetings to identify key areas to focus on over the next several years.

Citizens for Responsible Lending

In November of 2013, the Texas Catholic Conference, Texas Appleseed, and the Baptist General Convention of Texas gave a presentation on the state of predatory lending in Texas. More than 40 community members gathered to discuss the situation in Waco. Nearly $9 million is drained from the Waco economy each year because of the fines from these institutions. Many institutions charge upwards of 500% APR and the average payday borrower in Texas pays $840 for a $300 loan. Waco Community Development, along with various other organizations, are currently convening meetings to bring people together to start taking action against predatory lenders. We voted on a name in June of 2014 and our group is now called Citizens for Responsible Lending.

We have formed task teams around four areas of work. Those four areas are:

  • City Ordinances
  • Alternatives to Payday Lending
  • Education/Presentations to Groups
  • Data Collection/Research that is Waco specific (physically count the stores, where they are located, demographics served, etc.)

This is a broad-base community effort and we welcome any further support from concerned citizens in the greater Waco area.