Our History

it started with a desire to help women.

Beginning with roots in a group of women seeking to help other women, projectHandUp, a nonprofit that would impact a community forever, was born. Spanning over a decade, learn more about The Gatehouse journey below.

First Friday logo

Growing out of a desire to see women live life to their highest potential, Lisa Rose and a group of women started First Friday, a free once-a-month experience to give women a practical hand up to navigate life’s challenges. Each month, more than 350 women  would hear “real talk about real life” at a movie theater in Southlake, Texas from experts from across the country.

projectHandUp logo

The First Friday experience transformed into the 501(c)(3) projectHandUp (PHU), through which women who needed more than an event and book signing could receive practical resources as they were empowered to end cycles of abuse and poverty.

Sixty-one acres in Grapevine, Texas outside DFW Airport, was purchased and the stepping stones were laid for The Gatehouse, the second initiative of projectHandUp.

Construction officially begins on The Gatehouse community consisting of 4 neighborhoods, 2 advisor centers, a general store, Keeps Boutique and the Washington Community Education Center.

With attendees including Texas Governor Greg Abbott, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and Grapevine Mayor William D. Tate, The Gatehouse officially opened to serve the women and children in the community.

After God Squad volunteers made the beds, stocked the cabinets and prayed for the incoming family, the first Gatehouse member moved in Easter week and began their new journey towards self-sustainability.

“This community will always be a part of me.  I have healed tremendously and feel ready and able to provide for my children now because of all of you. You have touched mine and my children’s lives directly and indirectly. Thank you all who have contributed to The Gatehouse, you are the sweet silver lining of hope for many – as they experience God’s love graciously poured upon them here.”

Recognizing a need for access to quality childcare, early learning and to ensure kids are kindergarten ready, an Early Learning Academy is seen as a need for the community.

Legacy Early Learning Academy, a new 501(c)(3), is formed to ensure safe and reliable childcare and early learning for infants to school age children.

“My time at The Gatehouse was a season of love, support and growth. I was empowered and able to accomplish a lot, including emotional growth. My life and my son’s life has been restored and renewed. We are forever grateful for our time here.”

On March 28th, The Gatehouse celebrates 5 years of service to women and children overcoming crisis.