Often Asked Questions...
If you have a question that is not answered here, please reach out to us. We are very transparent and upfront with our mission, our future, and our daily lives. We are ever learning and growing in what we do and your feedback is important to us.
Q - Where is Mission House CCLRC located?
A - We have moved! As of April of 2021 we have moved to Esther Street in south St. Joseph. Our new mailing address is 6922 Esther Street, St. Joseph MO 64504. We are currently in the process of renovating two mobile homes for the men living at Mission House at 6900 Esther Street, St. Joseph MO 64504.
Q - What does Mission House CCLRC do?
A - Our first mission is to house people. We open up 4 of our 5 bedrooms (where Ryan and Kim also live) to people who find themselves in a homeless or struggling situation. We also help those people with their individual needs to help them get back on their feet and become self-sustainable. Those needs can include things like food, clothing, personal hygiene, eyeglasses, ID, birth certificate, health care, job search, transportation, budgeting, etc. We do not always provide these things, we utilize the resources that are available in St. Joseph and help them navigate the process. We strive to create a healthy environment that encourages personal and spiritual growth. We have a weekly Bible study, and will guide anyone hungry or, maybe just curious, to know the Lord.
Q - Who do we help?
A - People come to us in various situations. Here are a few examples of people who have stayed with us; A young woman aged out of the foster care system who moved to St. Joseph from Florida for a job opportunity that didn't work out. A man who had lost his wife to cancer and was needing a little help getting back on his feet. A couple and their son who stayed for a couple months to save up for rent and deposit money for better living conditions. A man battling meth addiction and his wife who were losing their home. A man battling a mental condition who was living on the streets. A man suffering from PTSD who was couch surfing. A woman working on her non-profit dedicated to helping victims of sexual abuse needing an affordable place to stay. A woman living in an abandoned house. Not everyone who stays with us comes from a homeless situation, but might be headed in that direction. Not everyone has a substance abuse addiction, but probably has abuse or trauma in their past. We can't always help everyone who stays with us, sometimes they're just not ready. Our prayer and hope is that we show them love in a way that they may have never experienced and plant seeds that there is a better way to live.
Q - How do people find us?
A - Through local churches and ministries, google searches, word of mouth, local news coverage, Facebook, local service organizations, and through others that we have helped.
Q - Do we have requirements for stay at MHCCLRC?
A - Yes, we have an application process that we go over with the person in need. We make it clear to them what is expected of them and, if it is a good fit both for them and us, to have them move in to our home. Some examples of expectations are: No smoking on the property, contribute financially an agreed upon amount, demonstrate respect and a positive attitude, keep their room clean and help with chores around the house, they must be progressive with employment, schooling, or volunteering, curfew of 10pm. We have no tolerance for the following:
Possession or use of drugs, alcohol, or weapons, criminal activity or behavior, profanity, disrespect, laziness, or dishonesty. The person staying with us signs an agreement with the requirements of stay.
Q - Is MHCCLRC a detox or addiction rehabilitation center?
A - No, while addiction is always going to be a factor in what we do, it is not our main mission. We are not equipped to handle someone in the midst of a substance abuse addiction. However, we will never turn anyone away if they are progressive in their recovery and determined to overcome. We assess every individual that applies to determine whether they are willing to put in the work it will take for them to overcome their destructive behavior. We also give drug tests if we think it is necessary for accountability and to enforce our no tolerance policy.
Q - Is MHCCLRC a halfway house?
A - No. Halfway houses help people re-enter society. While we do, in specific instances, help men from the local prison, that does not encompass who we help or define who we are. (Refer to the question "Who do we help?") If a man in prison finds out about us and needs a good home plan, he will write us. We will then inquire about that person from the prison and find out if they are involved in any of the voluntary programs offered to help offenders overcome their challenges and get on the right path. We can get references from the chaplains and the ladies that work with the "Gateway" program. We will meet with them if it is even possible to house them due to availability and their specific circumstance. This takes place several weeks or months before their release date so that we can get to know them face to face and through letters. We find out what their goals are, what their fears are and how we can best help them. We try to set up at least one other person in our community that can mentor them and help them navigate a new life.
Q - What do our neighbors think about MHCCLRC in their neighborhood?
A - We have gotten to know a few of our neighbors well and we have a great relationship with them. We have fixed the house up quite a bit and we love the compliments about how we have restored the house from the long time folks in the area. We also have several neighbors donate food to our Free Little Pantry on a regular basis where we also share the fresh produce straight from our garden. Our garden is a great conversation starter and we will have people ask if they can pick berries or have a few tomatoes or whatever is in season. We have never heard negative feedback from our neighbors about what we do or who is staying with us as no one has ever caused any disruption for the neighborhood. Many of our neighbors really don't set us apart from any of the other households in the neighborhood, we really are just people living our daily lives.
Q - Have we ever had to remove anyone from MHCCLRC?
A - Yes, when someone who is staying with us chooses to break the agreement of requirements for stay repeatedly, we will ask them to leave. Usually, by that time, they are ready to move on. We have never had an occurrence where someone did not leave upon request.
Q - Who funds our daily operations?
A - We are self funded, we do not take any outside funding for our daily operations. Everyone who stays here contributes financially. We are debt free, so it does not take much to pay the bills. We always have enough for bills, any home or car repairs, and also a good deal of outreach in the community with our operations budget. We do, however, receive designated funds occasionally for outreach. (Please read more about that in 'Where do financial donations to MHCCLRC go?')
Q - What are our biggest needs on a daily basis?
A - We can always use toilet paper, laundry detergent, and gas cards if you would like to donate anything to our daily operations.
Q - Where do financial donations to MHCCLRC go?
A - Our capital building fund. We are currently raising funds for our future plans of building a larger facility to better meet the needs of our community with more housing, low-income apartments, and many more opportunities to meet the spiritual and physical needs of our struggling neighbors. We also receive designated funds, occasionally, for outreach that go to a specific event, such as (but not limited to) Day of Hope St. Joseph, One Church events, and serving meals at Valley Community Food Kitchen.
Q - How can you help?
A - PRAYER! We always need prayer for guidance, protection, and grace just to name a few things! You can donate financially to our capital campaign. You can donate toilet paper, laundry detergent, or gas cards for our daily operations. We also occasionally need help with transportation for our residents who don't have their own car. They need rides to work, the store, to volunteer, and other various places. Please contact us if you would be willing to help out with rides. 816-596-0664 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Q - How has this ministry impacted us?
A - MHCCLRC, founded in August of 2016, has taught us so much about the Grace of God. It is something that is experienced, but hard to explain. It has broken stereotypes of what it looks like to be homeless, addicted, angry, and broken. It has inspired compassion and personal growth in us that probably otherwise would have been stifled in the normal goings on of life. This ministry has shown us what it means to trust God as our provider. We, Ryan and Kim, both quit our prosperous "normal" jobs as a sheet metal worker and a hairstylist to pursue God's will for us. We both work a day here and there for our income, but God has always provided for us! We are part of an amazing community that supports us in so many different ways. We could not do this alone! We are humbled and grateful to live the life we live here at Mission House CCLRC!