We are again using Crowdrise to fund our efforts in reducing the number of youth experiencing homelessness in the Grand Rapids area. We are working to raise funds to expand our capacity to serve more youth like Ricardo in 2016.
Can I take a moment to tell you Ricardo's story?
But first, if you're short on time, click on the donate button and give anything you can. Right now. $25 provides living essentials for one young person, $100 provides life skills education for one youth for a month, and $400 allows you to sponsor one youth for a month, and $1000 lets you sponsor one house for a month. Your donation will make a real impact immediately.
Now, back to Ricardo.
Ricardo is one awesome guy. I mean, someone who encourages his friends, maintains a job with a landscaping company for over a year, and recovers from a moped accident stronger than ever is definitely someone I'm proud to know.
Ricardo moved into 3:11 after struggling with a housing situation in an over-crowded apartment where he was sleeping on the floor or couch each night. Ricardo... well, we call him Ric... is one of the hardest working, kind-hearted, young people that I've ever met. He is motivated, determined and passionate about living his best life.
But, earlier this year, Ric was riding a moped and got hit while going through a green light. He was launched from the bike and lodged under the guardrails. He broke both of his legs and had a concussion. Doctors said it would be at least a year before he could walk again.
Can I tell you more about how amazing Ric is? He's already walking. He took his first steps a mere 3 months after the accident. 3 months! His physical therapist told him that his upper arm strength along with his dedication and determination are why he's already off crutches.
You see, Ric approaches EVERY part of his life this way, with strength, dedication and determination. That's why, in his short time at 3:11, he got a job, payed rent on time every month, got his driver's permit, started down the path to obtaining his high school completion, saved significant amounts of money, and continues to make progress towards his goals through the challenges he's faced over the past few months.
Ric is just one of the many incredible youth we get the privilege of working with each year as we fulfill our mission to develop safe, affordable housing for youth who are homeless and partner in their transition to healthy interdependence. We currently house 4 youth at a time in our home and have seen tremendous growth in the lives of all the youth we work with, from GED completion to college enrollment, from full-time employment to job and pay raises, from driver's licenses to savings accounts.
Unfortunately, 4 youth is a small number compared to the amount of youth experiencing homelessness in Grand Rapids and Kent County. According to recent counts, over 2,000 young people experience homelessness in Kent County in any given year. So, while we are making an impact in the lives of the youth in our home, there is much more to do.
We are excited to announce that we are partnering with organizations in the community to open two more houses in 2016. We cannot wait to see how God multiplies our resources so we can serve more young people.
Here's where you come in. You may know some of this or you may know none of it. You may have supported us over the past few years; praying for us and walking with us, or this may be the first time you're hearing of this incredible need. Regardless of how you heard of us, we're so excited to get to know you. And, as we move towards this next step in our journey, we are using Crowdrise to raise funds and raise awareness. Will you join us?