Mission: Valley Mission offers shelter, support, hope, and God’s love to the homeless. Basic needs of shelter, food, clothing, and spiritual encouragement are provided to all.
Community Need: Over the past six years, the Valley Mission has seen a steady increase in the local homeless population, particularly children and families. There are many segments of local homeless: chronically homeless, situational homeless, and those who experience intermittent homelessness because they do not have the tools necessary to become self-sustaining. Valley Mission’s goal is to work with clients to obtain permanent, affordable housing. Evidence shows that obtaining housing results in a faster pathway towards self-sufficiency and ultimately results in cost savings to taxpayers. The longer a person remains homeless, the higher the rates of emergency services, potential incarceration, and untreated chronic health issues. To address this, Valley mission aims to pay for initial housing support, transportation, identification/birth certificates, and medications. All of these tools will help the clients address immediate issues so that they can then focus on the long term issue of obtaining and maintaining permanent, affordable, and appropriate housing.
Primary Activities: Valley Mission is a Christian ministry whose programs revolve around temporary shelter and meals for the homeless. However, over the last five years, they have greatly expanded their services, understanding that their residents come to them with many traumas that need to be addressed for them to become self-sustaining. Their primary programs are Case Management Services, Pastoral Counseling, After School Program, Mental Health Program, Celebrate Recovery Program, and their Community Outreach Services that include emergency food boxes to the needy as well as vouchers for clothing at their Thrift Stores. During the past two years, they have also increased their emphasis on assisting clients with obtaining affordable housing, mental health services, and employment. These three factors appear to contribute the most to successful independent living.
Constituents Served: Valley Mission serves the local homeless, and the majority of them come from the cities of Staunton and Waynesboro, and Augusta County. A majority of the clients fall at or below 125% of the Federal Poverty Index. Individuals with sexual offenses are not permitted on the property. Last year Valley Mission served 649 individuals (109 children and 540 adults). Children: age ranges 0-5 (55); 6-11 (36); and 12-17 (18). Adults: age range 18-23 (70); 24-44 (257); 45-54 (118); 55-69 (80) and 70+ (15).
Program Details: The Always Seek Knowledge (ASK) Program is a compliment to their Case Management, After School, and Mental Health Programs. Although ASK encompasses education, mental/physical health, financial health, legal services, housing resources, and job skills training, the focus of this year’s program will be assistance with transportation, identification/birth certificates, medications, and initial housing support. By providing these financial resources, the clients will be better able to focus on obtaining and maintaining safe, affordable, and appropriate housing for them and their families. So far they have secured $80,000 for this program.
Amount Requested: $10,000
Operating Budget: $1,321,517