Hope into Action
Our first house was opened in July 2010. Since then we have opened 4 other houses and have bought a further 2 which will open by 1st October and we hope to purchase a further two 2 houses.
Therefore by Christmas 2011, 18 months after opening, we will have 9 houses in partnership with a total of 8 churches. We also have a further 3 churches willing to partner with Hope into Action for whom we are looking for investment capital to purchase a house.
The NHS National Treatment Agency has already recognised the quality of our work and awarded us an award in recognition.
To date we have worked with a total of 13 service users. Some are ex-heroin addicts, some have a history of serious alcohol misuse or are alcoholics, a few have mental health issues, many have criminal records and more than half are ex-offenders:
• 2 of our clients have returned to prison – one was found not guilty when the offence went to court. The other was for an offence committed several years ago.
• 2 have not maintained their tenancies.
• 11 have maintained their tenancies and paid their rent.
None have relapsed into addiction.
• Some have agreed to and / or are volunteering for their local community in some capacity, some have found jobs and more than half have found their relationships with their family has significantly improved.
Our client's stories:
1) X was an ex-offender with no where to live on release. He was a Christian with nothing to rely on but God. Hope into Action met him inside twice, at the gate and escorted him to a home. People from the local church, (not five minutes from the home) welcomed him into the house and local community. He now works for Hope into Action helping other ex-offenders rehabilitate their lives.
2) Y was an ex-heroin addict who had spent several years living in a hostel. He was unable to find accommodation out of the hostel. He came to live in a Hope into Action house – he joined an alpha group, has been coming to church, works for someone in the church and is now signed up for street pastors and was commissioned recently as a street pastor.
3) Z spent the winter living on the streets, in fact sleeping in a tent amongst the nettles by the river. He was already going to a local church and when the church house was opened he was asked to move in. Since then he has been in touch with his family, he is able now to get a job and he is looking to volunteer and mentor others.
As a team we were recently given the following verse from Ephesians:
‘Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen’
Our hope, aim and driving motivation is to bring some glory to the church. He has already done more then we could imagine and are excited about what lies ahead.
We are currently in partnership with the following churches: Bretton Baptist, Church on the Rock, Open Door and Kingsgate. The need on the streets is massive. We would love to be in partnership with many more.
For a previous article about Hope into Action click here