By: Chelsea Davis-Bibb, Ed.D.
Founded in 2009 by Edna Griggs, Acres of Angles is a membership-based organization that goes out and do different events with seniors who may have been overlooked. The purpose of the organization is to “bring awareness to physical health and empower them to be able to live the rest of their life in dignity.” Over the years, the organization has made such a great impact in the lives of many seniors. Griggs made it known that the seniors are very appreciative that someone has taken the time to look out for them. She stated, “They are so involved and so excited just knowing that somebody cares about them and have not forgotten them.”
Acres of Angels hosts many events throughout the year for the seniors. One of the events include a senior gala where seniors can dress up, play bingo, and enjoy the evening. Different vendors are also present from the medical community to give them different resources they may need. They also have a diabetes walk, which hits close to home for Griggs as she is living with diabetes. The diabetes walk is an event that is used to help bring awareness to the illness as well as the importance of eating healthy. She made it known that there is a disparity within the community when it comes to healthy food and vegetables.
The walk is held at Lincoln Park every year so that it is convenient for those in the community to participate. Amongst those in attendance this year was Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee who talked about the importance of having events like the diabetes walk. Griggs also discussed how during the pandemic many people with chronic illnesses lost their life and how diabetes was one of the illnesses.
The organization also hosts a women empowerment summit every year. During the summit, women come together to help uplift each other. There are different speakers who come and talk to the women, and they receive information regarding health and wellness.
In addition to helping the seniors, Acres of Angels does activities with kids who come from economically disadvantaged homes. Griggs mentioned how some of them feel disconnected and feel like they’ve been forgotten. Through the organization, Griggs makes it her mission to help improve the community around them by educating them on different things and bringing resources to them. Some of the kids she helps have a lot of issues at home, don’t have adequate resources, and look at school as a safe haven, but still don’t receive the support they need. She also discussed how some kids are being bullied and there are fights amongst each other due to the limited resources.
During the pandemic, the organization also started a group for young men called Boys 2 Men. The purpose of the group is to educate the young men, get them involved in something, and make sure they graduate. During the pandemic, the organization has held zoom meetings and partnered with different high schools in the Aldine Independent School District. The organization had different individuals such as judges and attorneys to come in and speak with the kids to try and encourage them to stay in school and do the right thing. The pandemic took a toll on our young people as many dropped out of school. Acres of Angels is making it their mission to not allow these young men to become another statistic in their community.
Griggs wants to continue to empower our youth and to let them know that they can be anything they want to be. She stated. “First, they have to trust God. He must be number one. If you keep him number one, there is nothing that will stop them from achieving the goals they want to in life.
Griggs is a proud resident of the Acres Homes community and continues to serve the community daily. She received this vison to create the organization from God in the middle of the night. She recalled God speaking to her and stated, “You have acres and acres of land, and you’re the angel who needs to help the community.” She turned this vision into a reality and has been going ever since.
It is people like her who continue to make their mark on the lives of others. In the words of Dorothy Height, “Without community service, we would not have a strong quality of life. It’s important to the person who serves as well as the recipient. It’s the way in which we ourselves grow and develop.”