In The Beginning
The conversation and prayer to help the homeless people in Prescott began in 2010. The Incorporation of Agape House of Prescott followed in 2013 and the first family was helped in 2015.
It began in 2015 with one family. Fast forward 4 years later, and the Agape House has currently served 44 single parents and children. They currently provide support, rent, and utilities for 10 single parents and children. It doesn’t stop there, they have six families in the Post-Care program. Agape House firmly believes in caring for the person. This means continued support, love, and prayer for the families after they graduate from the program.
44 individuals have graduated from the Agape House program. 38 of the 44 have determined successful and continue living a prosperous life. That is a success rate of 86%.
What is success? Success is measured by self-sufficiency and the ability to maintain housing, job, and a modest family lifestyle. A success rate of 86% is an extraordinarily high success rate. Most programs that help people in need are hoping for 15%. Due to lack of stability, homelessness is often cyclical and creates an unhealthy pattern for many years. Agape hopes to stop the cycle.
Agape House firmly believes that the reason for these fantastic numbers is that housing isn’t the primary objective. The approach of Agape House is to place housing second. Disciplining the individuals and teaching them the love of Christ is number one. Agape deals with the whole family, spiritually, physically and emotionally to aid them in understanding the brokenness that brought them to needing Agape as well as changing their thinking to wholesomeness.
Everyone Is a Piece of the Puzzle
Most of the families come from living in their cars or on the street. Housing provides a nurturing family setting. There are many other wonderful programs in the Prescott Area, but none of these programs addresses the whole family and provide the extensive training that Agape House provides. Agape House is the only program in town which allows families to stay together.
Programs do not change people. God changes people. Habits need to be broken or changed. A major cause of homelessness is lack of healthy relationships. It is crucial that this is unwound and retaught. Healthy vs toxic relationships, codependency, and establishing healthy boundaries is crucial to the success of ALL individuals.
Ending homeless is not an easy job, nor an overnight fix. Agape believes that on average it will take about 6 months to establish a healthy routine, create a savings acct balance sustainable to provide first and last month’s rent, and teach sustainable life skills. The TIME factor is crucial. Many “programs” require a participant to “get a job”, however maneuvering through KEEPING a job is a set of life skills that most of the residents are not familiar with.
With an experienced staff, Agape House can assist each family to work through the help they need. Areas such as budgeting, debt reduction, menu planning, organizational and time management skills, budget, spending plan, job training, parenting, marriage, relationships, and career coaching are all areas the staff focuses on. They also consider suggesting returning to school to provide a livable wage rather than minimum wage, outsource counseling, suggest celebrate recovery, AA, or other support circles. Again, Agape House does more than provide a bed, they provide hope for a successful future.
If you want to learn more about how you can help Agape House change lives, contact the office at (928) 910-1089.