Proverbs 24:27 “Prepare your work outside; get everything ready for yourself in the field and after that build your house.” Haggai 1:8 “Go up to the hills and bring wood and build the house, that I may take pleasure in it and that I may be glorified, says the Lord.”
If you’ve ever built or bought a house you know that there is much that you have to prepare and get ready before you get to the settlement table. Even if you are going to rent, much preparation and all of these demand a lot of money up front. But can you imagine how you would prepare if you were homeless? And what if you were homeless coupled with a disability whether it was a physical or mental disability, chronic health issues, developmental disability, recovering addictions or have just gotten out of prison? That is where the Christian Caring Center comes into their lives. We run 12 different programs on 4 tiers: Outreach, Crisis, Wrap Around Services, and Permanent Housing. All of these programs are the “Preparation” to housing. I never met a homeless person that didn’t have layers of problems. We see people that have lived through a lifelong disability or a recent life event like a health crisis, death of a spouse or parent or divorce, etc. Sometimes we meet on the street during outreach. Sometimes a church member, friend or another agency refers the person to the Christian Caring Center. We are able to give them case management services or what I call intercession and begin to minister to emergency needs or long term needs-most of the time both. An example would be a man coming to the Code Blue Shelter, then going into our Men’s Shelter, getting back into the work force by first volunteering at the Christian Caring Center or Village Thrift Shop, securing employment or restoring benefits, receiving Bible study and Church fellowship and locating and securing housing. We have been given a GREAT blessing of the land next door to the Outreach Center on 376 Lakehurst Road, Browns Mills. We are looking to develop a prototype of 6 units of micro housing for 6 individuals. This would be a first step to a larger project of 72 units within the County, prayerfully Burlington Township. I have enclosed drawings of our Cape Cod style units that would fit in well with any community. We would be able to continue our case management services and supportive wrap around programs to all the clients on site or right next door. We are so excited to be able to offer such hope to homeless individuals and bring “take pleasure in it and that I may be glorified, says the Lord.” These 2 projects would offer 78 individuals housing for the 267 unduplicated individuals that came through our Code Blue Shelters in only 47 nights. The need is at a crisis point. Now as you can imagine this will take lots of funding, BUT THE LORD HAS provided donated land at the perfect location, and Jacobstown Baptist Church has donated $18,000 along with 2 anonymous donors of $1,100-PTL!!! Our first step is to get Pineland Commission approval and at a preliminary meeting they told us because the one building has 6 separate kitchens and bathrooms, we need $27,000 in development credits or someone who has these credits to donate them. So we are almost there-PTL! Only need $8,000 more. Plus we need (prayerfully pro-bono) an Environmental Engineer. Then we can go to the Township Zoning Board and then we can build. The larger project “Community of Hope” needs about $50,000 predevelopment costs. Sounds overwhelming, but when God starts using His people, we can get it done!!! We are asking that you put both of these projects on your prayer lists, start some conversations about these projects and donate what the Lord puts on your heart. As always, we thank you for all your support. You are changing the world one soul at a time and we praise God for you!!!!
Abiding in Him, Madelyn Sutton