Hope on the Streets is one of our homeless outreach programs providing a helping hand to the hurting who pass the day downtown, in skywalks or live in nearby low-rent housing. Through Hope on the Streets, our staff and volunteers act as a mobile outreach team, dispensing encouragement, referral assistance and information about Hope Ministries' services and programs while reflecting the love of Christ.
Hope on the Streets teams are led by Hope Ministries staff members and include individual volunteers who have gone through our VIP volunteer orientation process.
As Hope Ministries continues to develop effective programs, we take into account that the folks we help are as diverse as the needs they present. Our Hope on the Streets teams have provided information to abused women, veterans, fathers parenting children alone, the mentally ill and so many other struggling people. Our outreach teams circulate each week and make contact with hundreds of men, women and children on the streets.
The efforts of our Hope on the Streets teams have produced results as we develop relationships on a first name basis on our weekly “rounds.” Often, after several weeks of encountering our team members, individuals will make the decision to come to Hope Ministries for long-term help.
If interested in becoming a volunteer member of our Hope on the Streets team, click here to fill out our individual volunteer registration form, and be sure to check the box to let us know you're interested in Hope on the Streets.
To learn more about Hope on the Streets, call us at (515) 265-7272 or email email@example.com.
Helping the Homeless Get Off the Streets
Shari Miller and other Hope on the Streets outreach volunteers encourage the homeless to come in from the cold for a hot meal . . . and a new life.
Toting backpacks filled with juice and granola bars, Shari Miller and a team of volunteers take to the streets of Des Moines on Saturdays as part of Hope Ministries' Hope on the Streets outreach, which provides information, prayer and encouragement to the homeless and hurting who pass the day in downtown skywalks, near bus routes or in nearby low-income housing.
"Our goal," Shari says, "is to connect with people in conversation and build relationships so
when they get 'sick and tired of being sick and tired,' they'll come to the emergency shelter at Bethel
Mission or at least take part in the meal programs."
Shari got involved with Hope Ministries after her Sunday school class toured our facilities. "We
heard stories about people who had been addicted and in and out of rehab for 20 or 30 years and
were finally able to overcome their addictions at Hope Ministries because God was part of it. That
cemented everything I believed in, and I knew I wanted to be more involved." She's been part of our
Hope on the Streets team for two years now.
Hope on the Streets Coordinator and Men's Ministries Director Cole Lindholm tries to keep the teams informed of people they've had contact with who check in to our Bethel Mission emergency
shelter. One of them, Johnnie (click here to read Johnnie's story) made a lasting impression on Shari's soul.
"When we'd see Johnnie on the street, he might be sleeping off a hangover or maybe he'd been in jail because of public intoxication. He had this great heart—he told us how he'd try to encourage people in jail and all that he wanted to do when he finally got himself together." Shari sent Johnnie notes of support while he went through our recovery programs and is grateful he has become a believer and a role model for other men whose lives are in transition.
Shari says it feels good to make connections with people most of society looks past or ignores. "You go out there thinking that you're going to do something for them, but I have seen God through them and feel so blessed in the process. The blessings you feel when you're face-to-face and in communion with people of all socioeconomic backgrounds, races and religions can really be powerful!"