Thanks to those who helped Grace Centers of Hope win a $25,000 grant by voting for them as your favorite charity.

Here’s the WORLD magazine article announcing them as the winner, receiving the most votes of the five finalists.

Here’s the WORLD national newsmagazine article nominating them as one of five finalists for their 2015 Hope Award for Effective Compassion.

Miranda Glascock, employed by Grace Centers for five years and volunteer coordinator since May, who has been through their program and is mentioned in the above article, gave the following summary of their programs. Information also came from Brad Cairns and Brian Fessler, new tenants at 69 Seneca Street and recent graduates of their Life Skills program:

Overall program of Grace Centers:

  • ~1 year Life Skills (job training, working, small group Bible studies)
  • 2 years After Care (working and renting a house, which graduates of Life Skills start after saving up 2 month’s rent)
  • Then option to rent or buy a Community Development house (15% down, 10 year land contract for ~$400 / month)
  • Grace Centers receives 51% of its revenue from four area thrift shops (Oak Park, Sterling Heights, Waterford, Warren). Items are donated to Grace Centers.
  • Remainder from donations; no government money
  • Brian Fessler (one of the new tenants at 69 Seneca Street) drives a van for the Oak Park thrift shop, picking up donated furniture and gives some people rides to and from work at the thrift shops.
  • Brad Cairns (another new tenant and graduate of Life Skills) is now one of their volunteer coordinators.
  • 90% of people in their programs are dealing with some sort of addiction: gambling, alcohol or drugs, other 10% depression or other issues
Miranda Glascock explains the mission, vision and programs of Grace Centers of Hope to GM Powertrain volunteers.

Miranda Glascock explains the mission, vision and programs of Grace Centers of Hope to GM Powertrain volunteers.

Grace Centers of Hope now owns around 60 houses in Pontiac and is literally turning around Pontiac one street at a time: a Miracle on Seneca Street.

Here’s an article about their move to the former Clutch Cargo nightclub located across the street from the homeless shelter, converting it back into a church building.

After the move last year, they are fundraising to convert their former church building Grace Gospel Fellowship at Perry and Woodward into a shelter for women and children. They continue to operate the original homeless shelter in downtown Pontiac (originally Pontiac Rescue Mission).

Ongoing operating costs will increase as they are greatly expanding the number of people they are helping. The national recognition will help them raise the money necessary to continue to help people transition from homelessness and addictions into productive members of society. Congratulations to Grace Centers and thanks very much for your support!