November 5, 2015
Herb Johnson, President and CEO of San Diego Rescue Mission, could not have said it better when stating that hunger and homelessness is, “the biggest tragedy in America’s Finest City.” Homelessness is an epidemic in San Diego. On any given night, an estimated 10,000- 15,000 people are without a home in our own county. The numbers are astounding, but the true faces of the homeless and hungry are much more familiar than you may think.
They are young mothers and victims of abuse with nowhere to go. They are emancipated foster youth with no one to depend on. They are fathers who chose to pay for their child’s medicine before paying rent. They are men and women unexpectedly laid off from their jobs. They are people who have fallen out of society and been forgotten. These people need not be defined by this epidemic they have fallen victim to. What they need is someone to believe in them and support them in getting their feet back on the ground. The San Diego Rescue Mission embraces this and believes in the inherent worth of every homeless man, woman, and child.
When San Diego Rescue Mission first opened their doors to the homeless in 1955, they simply offered a warm meal, a temporary place to stay and the comforting news that Jesus loved them. 60 years later, the organization has grown to be much more than a soup kitchen, and now provides a full range of services to rehabilitate lives and restore hope. In the past year their mission has sheltered men, women and children for 151,840 nights, provided 455,520 meals, cared for 691 children and 946 women in their emergency overnight shelter, collected 2,907,989 pounds of food, and rescued 169 people in their Recuperative Care Unit.
From Hunger Relief to Mental Health Counseling to Housing, the programs of San Diego Rescue Mission have one common goal and that is to end hunger and homelessness. While the organization is extremely proud of the fact that lives are saved through their critical services; they also know that they do not achieve this alone. It’s only through generous support of thousands of people that they are able to carry out their live-saving work. Thousands of people like you. 91% of their income comes from individuals like you, as the Rescue Mission accepts no government funding for their core programs. Moreover, they receive over 40% of their income between the months of October & December, yet the needs of the hungry and homeless are 365 days a year. What will you do to save a life this giving season?