let’s celebrate together
“Faithful” is the word that comes to mind when describing 2021. God was SO FAITHFUL to protect and provide for us in a prolonged pandemic. You were faithful and gave abundantly of your time and resources. Our staff was incredibly faithful to show up every day and serve those experiencing homelessness, and our students were faithful and committed to their recovery through unprecedented trials.
In Matthew 25:21 Jesus says, “The master was full of praise. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!”
As we look to the future the vision is clear. Because of you, we are expanding our programs and services throughout the county and working to get men, women and children off the streets permanently. God is giving us more opportunity to change lives, so let’s celebrate and work together!
I hope you take joy in the stories and the results from 2021 included in this Impact Report. Together we are changing the state of homelessness in San Diego County.
WHAT WE DO
Ending Homelessness One Life at a Time
Our services and programs are designed not only to meet the immediate, tangible needs of those who come to us, but also to address the underlying issues that led them to a life on the streets.
With your support, lives are transformed through:
MISSION ACADEMY RESIDENTIAL PROGRAM
Where Healing Begins
Our faith-based, one-year residential program for men, women and single parents with children is a system of resources that helps students courageously confront their problems and provides the life skills needed to end their cycle of homelessness. The three semesters are focused on key areas:
Meet 3 students on their journey to end homelessness.
Semester 1 – Wellness
David was raised in a home where he was taught that you speak only when spoken to. While his father provided financially, neither of his parents were emotionally available.
Since David’s family moved a lot, he never had a chance to make lasting connections. Growing up feeling isolated and alone, alcohol became his only friend.
From the age of 15 to 63, David was captive to his addiction, often experiencing homelessness. He held down jobs and even got married, but time and time again, he fell back into his old ways. “Drinking cost me a lot. I didn’t have a life. I had an existence for 48 years.”
He started losing hope for a better life, but David refused to give up. His last relapse led him to the Rescue Mission for a fresh start after a referral from our Bread of Life Center in Oceanside.
Here 4 months, David is working on his relationship with God. For the first time, he’s decided to turn his life over to Jesus.
Getting healthy is a big focus and he’s participating in Up & Running, a wellness program that trains students to run the San Diego Half Marathon.
“The Lord is working on my heart. I pray a lot, especially when I’m running. There are opportunities to push and ask Him for strength and get me a little further than I got the day before. The Lord’s given me this time to seek Him, learn more about Him and trust Him. My faith is getting stronger.”
David is enjoying the support of his running mates and he’s also found a home church. “I’ve surrendered to Jesus. I want to serve Him always.”
Pray for David’s recovery. Semester 1 is critical for his success in developing new habits to overcome addiction.
Semester 2 – education & Job Training
Danielle grew up in a broken home in Chula Vista. Her mom’s boyfriend, a father figure, was a functioning alcoholic who would frequently disappear. One day, he didn’t return home. Her mom turned to alcohol to deal with the loss, leaving Danielle feeling completely abandoned. Battling depression, she began using alcohol and drugs at 13 to cope with her pain.
“I thought it was my fault that he left. I looked for constant reassurance from people to feel secure.”
After high school, Danielle became homeless. She returned to her mom’s house — desperate to get on the right track — but became stuck in a cycle of homelessness, domestic violence, and addiction. At 25, she had her daughter, who is now 4 years old.
Danielle knew her daughter needed a safe environment away from the streets and sent her daughter to live with her father. Homeless and living alone in her car, Danielle knew she needed help if she wanted to build a life for her daughter. She found out about the Rescue Mission’s residential program at our shower ministry in Oceanside.
“I was in severe depression and suicidal because I thought I would never see my daughter again. I needed a shower and found out that Humanity Showers was going to be at Bread of Life. There they told me, ‘You have hope, you have a future.’ I needed to do this program to get my daughter back.”
Now five months into her program at Mission Academy, Danielle’s invested in her sobriety and processing her emotions using tools she’s learned through classes.
“I’m getting custody of my daughter back soon, so the parenting class was very beneficial. I’ve learned to use more positivity, to take the negative situations and turn them into positive lessons. I’m learning to change my way of thinking, acting and responding. I’m going to show my daughter what healthy looks like.”
Danielle is close to God, going to church and Celebrate Recovery meetings, and is grateful to Him for her growth. In her job training, Danielle discovered a passion for helping others doing homeless outreach weekly. And she just got a full-time job!
Danielle is hopeful about being reunited with her daughter and is reconciling with her mom. She is looking forward to paying off debt, securing housing and being self-sufficient for the first time ever in her life.
Pray for Danielle to complete her recovery program, and for her reunion with her daughter. Women with children are the fastest-growing segment of those experiencing homelessness.
Semester 3 – Employment & Housing
Rosanna’s childhood was full of pain and loneliness. Her mom’s alcoholism and mental illness created an unstable environment, where tragically, Rosanna was sexually abused. Because she was taught not to share her feelings, she believed she didn’t matter and kept her shame inside.
As an adult, she numbed her emotions with alcohol and drugs. Deep down inside, Rosanna knew she wanted more in life. She hit her knees in prayer, asking God to remove her addiction. In 2011, she got sober.
“That’s when I found out that I was pregnant. I wasn’t ready to be a mother because I was still working on my sobriety. But this was God’s plan for me. When I gave birth to my son, my life changed. It wasn’t about me anymore. It was about this baby that God had blessed me with.”
When she had another son, the relationship with her children’s father spiraled downward. Rosanna fought to stay sober, while he was still caught in his addiction. They became homeless and then depression hit Rosanna hard. “I felt I was doomed facing my problems sober and trying to cope.”
The family came to San Diego hoping the new environment would help them start over. She went to therapy, found a job and a place to live but, within a few months, they found themselves homeless again.
Unable to give her boys a home, Rosanna was separated from her kids. Heartbroken, she knew she had to make a serious change.
Homeless and alone, Rosanna came to the Rescue Mission ready to work on herself and rebuild a firm foundation. “I had to surrender and put my faith and trust in God. I knew He would see me through.”
One month after entering the program, Rosanna was reunited with her sons! She credits the empathy from staff, the access to resources, and the courses she took, including family counseling and music therapy with her sons, for her family’s healing and spiritual growth.
“My kids forgive me and I’m no longer angry at myself. I love me more than I’ve ever loved myself. I have a really good bond with my kids.”
Rosanna and her sons just graduated from Mission Academy. She has a sense of security with her stable full-time job as a caregiver, and she’s saving for a deposit to move into their own place.
Pray that God blesses Rosanna with a perfect place to live and a yard for her boys to play in. Our goal is to ensure that every Mission Academy graduate secures permanent housing.
2021 at a glance
Because of you, lives are being transformed from homeless to hopeful. Take a look at the many ways your support is making a difference in the lives of men, women and children experiencing homelessness.
financial summaryOur Values of Faith, Integrity, Compassion and Excellence guide everything we do, including our financial stewardship. We are committed to ensuring that we maximize the use of every dollar received to benefit those in need.
|Gain on Sales of Properties
* Fiscal year October 1, 2020 through September 30, 2021. These numbers are unaudited. We receive an annual independent financial audit at the end of every year. Tax ID 95-1874073
You’re a Life-Changer for our neighbors without homes.