Archive for June, 2015
On Saturday, July 11, Santa Barbara Community Church hosted our graduation ceremony and honored 13 graduates. These men and women proudly graduated from our 12-month, state-certified drug and alcohol treatment program. At the event, they shared their stories of how God brought them out of suffering into a new life beyond their most hopeful dreams.
We are holding our eighth annual 4th of July Carnival for homeless guests on Saturday, July 4 from 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. This festive celebration will occur in our parking lot located at 535 East Yanonali Street. We are preparing to serve a BBQ dinner to feed approximately 300 homeless men, women and children.
Through the efforts of the Women’s Auxiliary there will be music to entertain guests, a carnival of games, and raffle prizes provided. The men and women in the Mission’s 12-month Residential Recovery Program will also be present to lend a helping hand. Our president, Rolf Geyling, stated, “Often forgotten during the holidays, our neighbors in need know they are loved at Santa Barbara Rescue Mission!”
“I remember walking down State Street at 2 in the morning, hating life,” Ted shared. “My soul was empty and full of hate. I didn’t know if I wanted to get clean . . . or die.” He continued, “I remember being cold and wet all the time, sleeping under bushes and parking garages.”
Ted explained, “It’s so hard to try to change when you don’t have a home or a place to shower or food in your stomach.” After using drugs and alcohol for years to dull the pain, Ted finally hit bottom. He quietly spoke, with great sadness, “I suddenly remembered that when I was a boy I vowed to myself that I was never going to be like my father . . . but it dawned on me that I’d become worse than him.”
Finally, Ted decided to get help. He walked through our doors and began turning his life around. During his very first interview, “I started crying,” he recalls. “Five days later I was in the program.” And he’s thankful for your help. “It’s amazing that people give to keep this place open for people like me who they don’t know—and society doesn’t accept.”
Ted is in the final phase of the program and has a full-time job. He laughed, “Life is good now. I can deal with it!”
The Santa Barbara Rescue Mission’s Board of Directors is proud to share with you the recent recognition of our president, Rolf Geyling.
Rolf was honored with the prestigious Westmont Medal on May 9 during the college’s commencement ceremony. He was selected for his strategic and effective leadership of the Rescue Mission. We are very pleased with his extraordinary work on behalf of the men and women we serve in our community.
Rolf joins previous Westmont Medal recipients Edward and Suzanne Birch, Chad and Ginni Dreier, Walter and Darlene Hansen, Harold and Annette Simmons, Gerd Jordano, and Michael Towbes.
We are grateful for the outstanding leader we have in Rolf Geyling.
Meeting needs together,
(Photos by M. Bradley Elliott)