Words of Hope

14th Annual Words of Hope

Presented by

Words of Hope is Caritas of Austin’s largest annual fundraising event. Each year, the event features powerful stories that reflect our mission, and celebrates those individuals and businesses who contribute so fully to our community.

Out of an abundance of caution and concern for the health, safety, and well-being of our guests, participants, and the community at-large, we have decided to cancel our in-person Words of Hope event that was set for Tuesday, September 14th at Austin Marriott Downtown. 

In lieu of another virtual event, please join us during the month of September for an online auction, opportunities to help Fund the Mission and a weekly video featuring interviews, Q&A and an inspirational story from our speaker Brenda Combs, who shares her journey moving from homelessness to earning her Doctorate in organizational leadership.

We invite you to join usVisit us online to see our online auction, make a donation or check out our videos.  Please help us spread the word and share this link with your friends, family and co-workers!

We may not be able to be together this season, but we can still join together to end homelessness in Austin. 


Dr. Brenda Combs

Dr. Brenda Combs is a symbol of inspiration and perseverance to all who meet her. A little over a decade ago, she was homeless, addicted to drugs and a petty criminal. She had been shot, beaten and raped during the endless years that she called “a freeway underpass in the worst part of Phoenix home.” It took hitting rock bottom for Dr. Combs to find the strength to turn her life around on a blistering summer day. Today she is a single mother, a speaker and advocate after earning a Master’s degree in special education and then receiving a Doctorate in organizational leadership with an emphasis in education.

Join Us

View Sponsorship Opportunities | Become a Sponsor | Download a Sponsorship Form | Purchase Tickets

Thank You to Our 2021 Sponsors

Champion Sponsors

* Denotes half sponsorship


* Denotes half sponsorship


* Denotes half sponsorship


* Denotes half sponsorship

Contact Lauren Portley at lportley@caritasofaustin.org or 512-646-1262 for questions.

Past Speakers and Entertainers

2019 | Robert Earl Keen – folk and Americana singer-songwriter
2018 | Emmitt Smith – former Dallas Cowboy, successful entrepreneur and philanthropist
2017 | Ron Hall – author of Same Kind of Different as Me and What Difference Do It Make
2016 | Dr. Jeff Salz and Alepho Deng – author of They Poured Fire On Us From The Sky
2015 | Bobby Bones – prominent radio personality
2014 | Marcus Luttrell – U.S. Navy SEAL and author of Lone Survivor
2013 | Luma Mufleh – inspirational coach of a soccer team called the Fugees-short for refugees. Basis for book Refugees United
2012 | Liz Murray – author of Breaking Night and whose story inspired the film From Homeless to Harvard
2011 | Rick Bragg – Pulitzer Prize winning author of All Over but the Shoutin’
2010 | Leigh Anne Tuohy – the woman whose life inspired the novel and film The Blind Side
2009 | Jeannette Walls – the author of The Glass Castle
2008 | Ron Hall and Denver Moore – authors of Same Kind of Different as Me