I posted a few days ago about my orientation at the Atlantic City Rescue Mission. Before attending I thought the ACRM was just a place that served hot meals and provided shelter to the homeless. This past Wednesday night I came to find out that it is so much more than just hot meals and shelter. While they do provide shelter for 750 single men, 75 single women, and 11 families each night, they also provide these people with healthcare (on site as well as off), counseling, support groups, and most importantly they give them hope that they will be able to return to this world as a self sufficient person. A high light for me was that the rescue mission is a faith based mission-meaning that they are supportive of a christian faith and offer chapel to their patrons 2 times a day! They also go out into the community and provide those who need it with food baskets, warm clothing, and they will even sit and pray with them if that is all they want! They provide programs for people with every need. They have work ready 120 day programs, programs to teach families how to maintain their living quarters, and manage their money and then they will place those families out in the community and give them 6months of follow up support and care if they need it to ensure they are on the right path.
My lesson learned this past wednesday night is that everybody comes from somewhere. For me, I know that we are all children of god (even if we have no blood family), and therefore need to support eachother through good times and bad. Maybe that is all someone needs just someone to sit with them and let them know that they are not on this rough road alone. I was very humbled this past week to see the shape and condition that some of these people are in, and it made me a little more thankful for the roof over my family's head and the warm food and comfort that we sometimes take for granted. Needless to say I cannot wait to start volunteering!! I will keep you updated :)