September 2016 Volunteer Spotlight
Mike – Above & Beyond Service
Mike began volunteering in 2002 when he was invited to teach a class to the men in the New Life Recovery Program. Little did he know that invitation would turn into more than a decade of service, his wife volunteering with the women, directing building projects, mentoring men, and enjoying every minute of it! When Mike first started he shares “I was a little nervous, but quickly realized the men were just like me…worth saving!” He loves seeing the spark in people’s lives when they accept God and he looks forward to his next visit. Mike recently received the Volunteer of the Year award for the Men’s New Life Recovery Program after a unanimous vote from the men in program for his dedication. He encourages others to volunteer and shares “it is fun and rewarding.” John Cravens, Men’s New Life Program Manager shares “Mike Brady is an extremely valuable servant for the Men’s New Life Program. He has a heart to see these men’s hearts and lives change for the better. I cannot count the times that I have personally witnessed him go above and beyond to help the men transition back into society.” Thank you Mike for your service! For information on volunteering, please click here or email Janet Shields, Volunteer Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
July 2016 Volunteer Spotlight
Del – A true Friend of the Mission
Del was recently recognized as Volunteer of the Year for the Friends of the Mission. This is a group of community members who take on projects including purchasing customized bibles for
students graduation, advocating the needs of the Mission, participating in events, and more! Del has been an active member for the last 6 years. He had previously served at a
Mission in Fargo, ND and was impressed at the magnitude of services the Good News Rescue Mission provided. On top of his activity with Friends of the Mission, he also picks up food donations, and helps serve meals. Del says “I am happy to be part of the Mission. I’ve made great friends and have good fellowship here. I wish more people would volunteer. It is so rewarding!”
May 2016 Volunteer Spotlight
Robyn – Rescuer of the Year
Robyn was recently recognized as Rescuer of the Year and with 17 years of service and her tender heart it is no surprise! Robyn started volunteering at the Mission in 1999 after participating in a chapel service her church was leading. She remembers seeing the need and felt immediately called to serve! It is not hard to see her passion come through when she talks about the Mission. When asked how volunteering here makes her feel, Robyn states
“I am blessed to be able to help…but the people served are blessed too and that increases the blessing!.” Robyn volunteers in many ways throughout the year; on fundraising committees, at special events, and even takes vacation days from work to volunteer in administration once a month. “Robyn’s heart to serve is contagious, she reminds us all to serve with joy! Her willing heart and desire to see the Mission succeed! We love having her on the team!” states Sabrina, Event Coordinator. Whether on site or off, Robyn is a huge advocate for the Mission. She states “the community could not get along without the Mission, the amount of services available are more than most people are aware of. It is so much more than just a homeless shelter”
In 1964, as the ink dried on the Good News Rescue Mission’s formation papers, a young man was joining the Marine Corps and preparing to ship off to Viet Nam. Nearly 30 years later, he would be featured in the documentary, “In the Shadow of the Wall” which would go on to win the 1993 Albert Dupont award for it’s portrayal of U.S. Veterans. After the war, this young man embarked on a career in education. With a deep concern for kids, the discipline of a Marine and the persona of Terry Bradshaw, he would win the respect of his students, the accolades of his peers and awards by the dozen.
39 years after joining the Corp, and after running multiple schools, writing a couple of books, and earning industry and community recognitions, this young Marine took the reigns of the Good News Rescue Mission’s Academic Center. Now in his sixties, and after a short detour to save the lives of countless pets as Director of Haven Humane Society, he has come back to the Mission as what he calls, “a lowly volunteer” – again in the Mission’s Academic Center.
His name is Dr. Ray John.
“When someone wants to test me, I tell them I used to kill people for a living,” he jokes.
“Most of these men and women have experienced so many failures that they just don’t believe that they can succeed,” he says as he points to a wall full of pictures. “Those pictures are proof that success is possible.”
The pictures he points to are students or former students of the Good News Rescue Mission’s Academic Center. Each photo is accompanied by a label that lists the goals they have achieved and are working toward. “Dr. Ray” as most call him, now helps a new generation of Directors at the Mission as they take the reigns and move forward. And, the new team has had success. In the last two years, the Center has helped more than 50 people enter college. Over 120 people – with help from the Center’s WorkSearch program – are now self sustaining and living in permanent housing.
Just recently, one of the men came in for a suit in preparation for a job interview. “Seeing a man or woman’s dignity and self worth restored, that’s what really makes my day, and those are the stories people need to hear about the Mission.”