Note from the Chief Executive Officer
get a job?
When I talk to people in the community about The City Mission, they frequently ask why our clients don’t just go get a job. The short answer is that many of them would gladly go get a job—almost any job—if it meant they could count on a consistent, adequate paycheck.
Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. Most of our guests don’t have the education, technology skills, or childcare they need to find anything more than a minimum wage position. With the average cost of a basic two-bedroom apartment, that leaves them with about $30 every two weeks to pay for food, childcare, and transportation.
At the Mission, we’re walking alongside our guests to give them a hand up, not a hand out, and we’re mentoring them every step of the way. Our resource centers teach technology skills and offer job training and education, so they can find the kind of work they need instead of just a quick fix.
May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us—yes, establish the work of our hands! –Psalm 90:17
Your support is a critical part of these programs. When you give to the Mission, you’re giving these men and women the tools they need to find jobs, care for their families, and lead self-sufficient lives. And as you’ll see in the Volunteer section of His Hands, the time you spend on our campus as a volunteer builds critical relationships that can help our guests find and maintain meaningful employment.
Thank you for caring for our guests, and thank you for being an invaluable part of their long-term solution.
Working his way home
How Jake found peace, clarity, and a whole new direction at the Mission.
Jake has spent most of his life trying to fit in. He was an expert at hiding his true feelings, but as the pressure he put on himself mounted, his façade began to crack.
Finally, a conversation with his grandmother led to a turning point.
“I told her that my living situation wasn’t very good,” Jake shares. “I said I had been thinking about suicide, and I asked if she knew anywhere I could go. She had heard about the Mission from her church, so she called, and they had a place for me.”
As soon as he arrived, Jake got to work. He worked outside on the grounds, cleaned bathrooms, and helped in the maintenance department… anything he could to stay busy. “I’d get started around 5:30 a.m.,” he says. “It was the best way for me to be able to cope with my stress and anger. It’s really helped me slow down.”
STICKING WITH IT
As Jake moved through the Crossroads program, his strong work ethic helped him stand out to the Mission staff. Eventually, others noticed his determination, and he began to get offers for jobs away from the Mission.
As he considered his future, he decided to continue with the program at Crossroads and focus on his spiritual well-being.
“I had several job offers, but I turned them down to stay here,” Jake says. “I didn’t want to start something and not finish it. With the anger issues I had, I don’t think I would have lasted too long anyway. I’d say I made the right choice.
“The anger management classes I took were really helpful. The Mission ties everything in with the Bible so you can’t really argue with it. I kept all my notes from that class, so I can look back when I need to reflect on something.”
Jake graduated from the Crossroads program in late 2017. He’s connected with a local church and is working to repair his relationship with his family. Most importantly, he’s come to understand God’s goodness in a whole new way.
“I’ve believed in God since I was a kid, and even when I walked away from Him, I knew He was always there,” Jake says. “I would ask Him why I was still alive or why He was blessing me… I never felt like I deserved it, but now I know: that’s just God.”
HOPE FOR THE FUTURE
Using the skills he learned at the Mission, Jake has begun training at a highly regarded culinary arts institute in the Cleveland area. In addition to an education, the program provides him with stable housing, medical care, and help with employment after he graduates.
He’s looking forward to a much brighter future, and he’s hoping to give back to others in need, though maybe not at the Mission.
“There is no giving back here,” he chuckles. “I try where I’m able to, but this place just keeps doing and doing and doing for you.
“If you don’t know, you should come down to the Mission and check it out for yourself. You’ll definitely see what I see; I guarantee it.”
Jake is just one of the many men and women who are working through the long-term programs at the Mission. They’re learning valuable life and vocational skills, and with the resources available here, they’re preparing for jobs that will help them care for themselves and their families in the future.
Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established. –Proverbs 16:3