FROM HOPELESS TO HOPEFUL
Our gifts for Mission & Service support counselling programs like The Counselling Centre in Brandon, Manitoba.
The Mission & Service support provided by The United Church of Canada helps to fund Project Hope, a program that provides professional counselling free of charge to those who are economically impoverished, such as non-status Indigenous clients, children, and seniors, who make up roughly 40 percent of the city’s population.
“These are people who would otherwise fall through the cracks,” explains Executive Director Heather Karrouze. She tells the story of a mom and three kids who recently fled an abusive relationship and are living in a hotel. “If it weren’t for Project Hope, they wouldn’t be getting counselling,” she says. “Project Hope provides counselling support to the mom and her boys; to the pensioner who has lost his wife; to the non-status Aboriginal whose family is far away, up north.
“A number of years ago, The Counselling Centre began to explore ways to shift the disturbing trend of domestic violence it was hearing about in its counselling sessions. The centre created Building Bridges, a 12-week program for men to explore what makes for healthy relationships. Since starting the program, the counsellors have seen a small shift in their counselling sessions toward decreased domestic violence. The shift is slow, but there is progress.
“It is our vision to help people go from feeling hopeless to being hopeful, from feeling diminished to being empowered,” says Heather. “Those [Mission & Service] dollars translate into lives being changed and, in some cases, being saved.”
If Mission & Service giving is already a regular part of your life, thank you so much! If you have not given, please join me in making Mission & Service giving a regular part of your life of faith. Loving our neighbour is at the heart of our Mission & Service.
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