Luke and Danny Getts were challenged by a family member to camp out for one year. They started in August 2014. They recently decided to take the project a step further by raising funds for the Mission's "Debtless for the Homeless" campaign. They are seeking the community's support with a pledge for each night they've camped out or a one-time donation. They are truly an inspiration to their peers and to us all that we can make a difference!
Please mark you gift "Debtless for t...he Homeless" so it can go specifically toward this campaign and mail to:
Backstreet Missions, Inc.
P.O. Box 3297
Bloomington, IN 47402
We'd like to recognize with grateful appreciation the efforts of "Do Something" in New York, Aeropostale's in Bloomington and students of the Interact Club at Bloomington High School North for the collection and donation of 250 pairs of jeans for the Mission through the "Teens for Jeans" clothing drive. Many homeless individuals coming to us for help will certainly be able to use them.
The Mission received a check for $3,789 from Kroger's "Share Your Feast" program. The employees chose the Mission as one of the recipients of the program. We appreciate all Kroger does for the community.
Lighthouse Christian Academy students collected nearly 400 non-perishable food items for the Mission's Food Pantry! Thanks to teacher Maria Thomas and the Student Council who initiated the food drive and for all the students who took part.
We were pleased to receive close to 1,000 cans of food donated by the Bloomington Robotics Club and Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington, School of Technology. Thanks so much! This goes to providing food for guests staying at the Mission, the Food Pantry and Geno's Cafeteria.
The Thanksgiving applications for food baskets are completed for this year. 400 families will be helped.
A prepared Thanksgiving Day meal will be served at Geno's Cafeteria at 215 S. Westplex from 11am-1pm....
Applications for those needing help with Christmas gifts for their children begins on Mon. Nov. 3rd. Call 334-4047 from 10am-4pm.
If you would like to purchase gifts for these children through our "Adopt-A-Child" Christmas program please call 334-4047 beginning on Thurs. Nov. 6th to get names, sizes and gifts the children would like.
A prepared Christmas Day meal will be served to the public at Geno's Cafeteria at 215 S. Westplex from 11am-1pm.
The Agape House women's shelter was presented this week with six homemade fleece blankets for children. These colorful blankets were given by the Stone Belt Leadership class. The project was the idea of one of the leaders and the class has been working on them since November. We appreciate the time and work that went into crafting them and know the mothers and children are truly grateful to receive them.
It has been an exciting winter so far! We are thankful the electricity remained on at "Agape House" women's shelter and at the "Upper Room" men's shelter and that there were no frozen pipe issues. Some of the staff spent a few nights at the Mission as traveling home would not have been safe. Kerosene heaters were purchased in the event of an emergency electrical outage. Guests were encouraged to remain indoors at the Mission during the day when they are usually out seeking em...ployment and going to various appointments. The men voluntarily pitched in shoveling the snow off the parking lot. I think they needed an excuse to play in the snow. We did not experience a huge jump in our population during this time. I believe several churches and businesses opened their doors to those in need which speaks a lot about the concern and compassion our community has for others.
Happy New Year!
2013 Mission Statistics
293 homeless men found shelter and hope at the "Upper Room" men's shelter (increase from 198 in 2012)...
30 women and 16 children found safety and peace at the "Agape House" women's shelter (double that of last year)
42,236 prepared meals were served at the Mission (43,568 in 2012). This includes those eating at the "soup kitchen" Geno's Cafeteria, guests at "Upper Room", guests at Agape House and weekend meals to a local low-income apartment complex.
1,394 individuals received canned food assistance at the Food Pantry (489 households) as compared to 1,194 in 2012 (405 households)
7,512 nights of lodging was provided (8,140 last yr)
400 families applied for Thanksgiving food baskets (same last yr)
200 children received Christmas gifts (same last yr)
600 volunteers served at the Mission
Nights of lodging and count of meals served depend on length of stay of our guests who are in different programs.
The Mission receives no government funding. Thank you for your support to keep these outreaches going!
We are looking forward for what God has in store for 2014!
Everyone at the Mission celebrated Jesus birth!
Gifts were given to 200 children through the "Adopt-A-Child" Christmas program. Thanks to everyone who participated in making this possible. Thanks to Beth May for overseeing and coordinating the entire program. Thanks to Vanessa McClary and the SCI Kiwanis groups who volunteered with wrapping gifts.
The guests staying at the Mission had a wonderful meal and were given gifts. Many have family in other places or are estranged f...rom their families. We are their extended family hoping reconciliation can eventually happen for them.
A Christmas day meal was served at Geno's Cafeteria for those in the community needing to share a meal with others during the holiday and our men's shelter guests. Thanks to the 29 volunteers from Clear Creek Christian Church who prepared and served the meal and did clean-up.
November is my favorite time of the year at the Mission. Volunteers show up for "Sorting night" in which a mountain of canned and boxed food is counted and place in specific food bins to be given out to 400 families in our area who need help with the extra food for a meal they can prepare in their own homes for themselves and family on Thanksgiving Day. Forty six churches were involved in the food collections this year. The following week the applicants arrive at 400 Opportu...nity Lane to pick up their food. Over 100 volunteers showed up to assist with this outreach last Saturday. Volunteers stand at the different food bins and place the food in the applicants sacks based on family size. Other volunteers escort the applicants around to the food bins, out to the truck to get their turkeys and bread and to their cars as they wish them a blessed Thanksgiving. Thanks to everyone who participated from start to finish.
A Thanksgiving Day meal will be served to our guests staying at the Mission and to anyone in the community who would like to share the traditional Thanksgiving fix'ins at Geno' s Cafeteria at 215 S. Westplex Ave. off W. 3rd St from 11 am-1 pm.
May we all be truly thankful for God's blessings not only on this day but throughout the year!
We appreciate April Heltsley-Senior Lecturer at IU's Kelley School of Business for donating her time this summer to design a computer program so the Mission can transfer our hard copy files to the computer. This will result in a faster, more efficient method of obtaining reports for both the "Upper Room" men's shelter and the "Agape House" women's shelter. Thanks April!
We had a visit today from Lisa Bryant from the Atterbury Job Corps Center who spoke with a couple of men staying here at the Mission regarding the Corps 1-2 year programs. Austin is interested in pursuing a Culinary Arts or Automotive career.
The Mission received a grant this week from Duke Energy in the amount of $1,098 to purchase meat! This will go a long way in providing food for those staying at the Mission and for those eating at Geno's Cafeteria. We appreciate Bruce Calloway for his participation in expediting the grant and delivering the check to us and to Dawn Horth and the grant committee for approving us.
Each summer students from all over the United States use their summer vacations to help others. This is a program of the North-American Interfraternity Conference called UIF (Undergraduate Interfraternity Institute). A different group of students volunteers at the Mission on Mondays and Fridays. We appreciate all their help!