Guest Author - Rev. Jackie OŽNeal S.T.M.
Bridge of Hope dedicates its mission to preventing and ending the plight of homeless single mothers and their chidren, throughout the United States. The organization calls upon churches as vehicles for change and action.
I contacted Director, Leslie Homer-Cattel to learn more information about becoming an affiliate with Bridge of Hope and was impressed with prompt follow-up. The next day, I received a packet of information along with a DVD which included facts and testimonials. After reading the background materials and watching the DVD, I sensed how urgently many communities need to connect with Bridge of Hope and consider initiating an affiliate program to definitely make a difference. The key ingredient, of course, is committment and drive to help the most needy.
Because Bridge of Hope affiliates serve the most needy and vulnerable- women and children, affiliates participate in a rigorous training program. The team effort between the affiliates, professional staff and church-based mentoring groups helps to motivate homeless single mothers to make important changes in their lives. During their participation in the program, the women begin to attain long sought after goals such as: finding permanent housing, achieving financial stability through employment, and creating strong, possibly life-long friendships with mentors and staff.
It is estimated 80% of single mothers who participate in The Bridge of Hope program, are able to achieve thier target goals of obtaining secure housing, and setting themselves on the path of economic stability.
Bridge of Hope generously provides free tools and a support system to help church-based persons establish a Bridge of Hope ministry in their local communities, and bring aid and resources to homeless families.
The Bridge of Hope model offers consultation and coaching for persons interested in launching a Bridge of Hope affiliate program. Ronald Sider, professor of theology at Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary told The Philadelphia Inquirer that Bridge of Hope works. "They are simply a fabulous group doing very effective work with single moms. They walk with the person and surround them with help. They know that people are not just machines and that they need inner transformation."
To learn more, Visit: http://www.bridgeofhopeinc.org