The Orange County Rescue Mission (OCRM) works to solve the systemic issues of brokenness and pain that exist within their community. The OCRM is a resource that exists to assist those struggling with a variety of considerable hardships including homelessness, abuse, addiction and abandonment. This organization is a faith-based institution that seeks to live out the commission set forth by Jesus Christ: to seek “the least, the last, and the lost” within their own Southern California community. The leadership and staff have set forth a vision with a creative mindset and a desire to grow the ministry in all spheres and directions.
OCRM’s Village of Hope works to counteract Orange County’s growing housing crisis— the latest estimation tallying the population just under 7,000 people. The program offers transitional housing for the homeless and provides spiritual and personal growth opportunities in the process. Members of the Village of Hope program have access to a wealth of resources, such as dental care, job training, and counseling. It even offers a full-fledged parenting center, an outlet for children to grow in areas inside and outside of school. Hope Family Housing is an affordable housing community that serves as the last step of the program in transitioning from homelessness to independent living.
In the same spirit of seeking restoration for the least, last, and lost, the OCRM employs the medium of art as a means of healing and restoration. Their campus has benefited from beautiful artwork generously donated by Orange County philanthropist and writer, Howard Ahmanson, Jr., and the OCRM partners with a local non-profit—Art & Creativity for Healing inc. (ACFH)—that uses art in a creative and purposeful way.
This partnership with Art & Creativity for Healing seeks to provide healing and comfort to those suffering through art therapy. This effort offers emotional healing for those suffering from a wide variety of challenges—pain, grief, fear, stress, and more. With the aim that patients gain clarity and insight, ACFH offers emotional healing through strictly guided exercises within their proprietary Art4Healing curriculum. AFCH operates out of their main workshop in Laguna Hills, while offering online courses to those in different areas.
In addition to OCRM, the organization is partnered with 35 other non-profit organizations across Los Angeles County, San Diego County, and Orange County. The nonprofit’s mission is to help six main demographics:
- At-risk teens and youth
- Children in long-term care and their siblings
- Active duty Marines, veterans, and their families
- Senior citizens
- Economically disadvantaged and homeless families
- Victims of domestic violence
The Orange County Rescue Mission will continue to ambitiously push for “real solutions with lasting impact” as their future unfolds. This has never been a small task; the OCRM understands the magnitude of the systemic problem that they are up against, as they battle homelessness through hope, offering healing to those left broken in our world. OCRM was able to see the fruit of their labor in FY2020 by offering shelter and hot showers to over 161,000 people in need; they collected and deployed over 756,000 clothing items to those who could not afford their own clothing; and they provided over 1.4 million meals to the hungry.
While the OCRM has seen admirable results, organizations like these need continual support to produce results in this way. Whether it be the Orange County Rescue Mission, Art & Creativity for Healing, or a similar organization in your own community, consider offering your resources to help support these causes that impact our communities, seeking out “the least, the last, and the lost of our communities.”