ETX organization provides 'Hope' in annual tennis tournament - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

ETX organization provides 'Hope' in annual tennis tournament


One of our own local organizations is holding their annual fundraiser this weekend, and they're inviting you out to join in the fun.

Living Alternatives is a ministry that provides pregnancy, parenting, adoption, and foster care services through different organizations in and around Tyler.

One of the main parts of the Living Alternatives ministry is the Fatherheart home, a home that provides care and services for young, pregnant women.

"When you reach the girl and you break through to that girl's heart, oftentimes you reach the child as well. Just lifelong, what she learns here, she's going to take with her into her parenting and into her married relationship and everything," said Heather Crain, Living Alternatives' Public Relations and Events Coordinator.

The Fatherheart home provides a place for young women to live during, and sometimes after, their pregnancies.

"We have programs, we have teachings, we have spiritual training, we have classes, we have a premiere high school where they go to high school if they haven't finished. And they can transfer those hours to another high school if they don't finish while they're here," said house parent Conley Brown, who lives full-time at the home with his wife to care for the girls.

To help keep the Fatherheart home and other Living Alternatives ministries running, Dr. Charles Heaton helped start the Hope oOpen 16 years ago. It's become Living Alternatives' major fundraiser for the year.

"It's just a lot of fun time, a celebration of life and a celebration of what life is all about and a celebration of what Living Alternatives is all about and a celebration for the Tyler community that's so supportive of what we do in this Hope Open tennis tournament," said Brown.

Support for a home that's free for the women who need to use it.

"It says in scripture that God puts the lonely in families and these girls, by definition, are lonely. And for the time they're going through this, we're family. And so it shouldn't be about dollars and cents, and that's why we count on this tournament, because that's what put the groceries in the pantry and the toilet paper in the bathrooms and the linens on the beds," said Crain.

It's a cause that the Living Alternatives staff says people can't forget about once they get involved.

"Tyler has been very generous and Tyler has gotten behind the vision of Living Alternatives and really made this tournament more than just about tennis," Crain said.

The deadline for playing in the tournament has already passed, but you can still support Living Alternatives by attending the tournament at the Tyler Tennis and Swim Club.

Bring your lawn chairs for Friday night's opening ceremonies -- there will be free food and games for the family, as well as a silent auction and raffle.

And then two days of hard core tennis -- an entertaining weekend that goes to a good cause.

For more information about the Fatherheart home and other Living Alternatives ministries, visit

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