Tolandria is a WorkFaith graduate from three and a half years ago who has been working temporary jobs with Local 559 Labor International Union since graduating. She has now entered an apprenticeship program with Vector Force Development in the gas industry. Once she completes her training, she will be hired by the company at a very competitive wage, and will be on the path to a new career. Before she left to start training out of state, she stopped by WorkFaith to update us and ring the bell. Praise God for providing Tolandria with this great career opportunity! WorkFaith is committed to supporting our graduates until they find careers. Your financial support helps us support them.
After 40 years of urban and low income community transformation efforts, Robert Lupton says in his book, Toxic Charity, that the best thing anyone can do to change the trajectory of a person’s life is to help them get a job. WorkFaith Birmingham is seeking to do exactly that while also giving them the gospel and a Biblical worldview of life and work. In 2017, we have been able to empower 213 adults in transition with the skills, values, and perspectives they need to enjoy the dignity of work and God’s good design for their lives.
We hope to serve more than that number in 2018, but we need your financial partnership to continue to accomplish our new goals as we grow our partnerships in the city. Without work, a person will always need the ongoing support of others, while with work, they can experience the dignity of providing for their family and helping others as well.
To read more from our December newsletter, click here.
Starting this Wednesday, we will begin hosting periodic informational meetings at The Salvation Army Center of Hope (2015 26th Avenue North, Birmingham, 35234). These meetings will take place on Wednesday from 9:00am-10:00am. The following are the upcoming dates:
Wednesday, December 13
Wednesday, January 3
Wednesday, January 31
We will share about the program and also handout and process applications. For further information about these meetings, or our program, please call 205.545.5000.
At WorkFaith Birmingham, we love partnering with local ministries and organizations in the city. We are thankful for the many churches and agencies that are making a difference in our community. We are excited to announce a new partnership between WorkFaith Birmingham and The Salvation Army here in Birmingham.
With a long history of meeting needs in communities throughout the nation, The Salvation Army is a wonderful, like-minded partner. Recently, they opened The Center of Hope and launched a new initiative, The Education & Workforce Development Center at this new facility.
WorkFaith Birmingham will be joining forces with the Salvation Army by holding WorkFaith Birmingham workshops at The Center of Hope. This will contribute to the work The Salvation Army is already doing by providing an additional avenue for individuals to receive workforce development and training.
"We are excited to partner with WorkFatih Birmingham and welcome them to our Center of Hope. This partnership will allow us to serve individuals across the Birmingham area equipping them to become employed and self-sufficient individuals earning a livable wage through basic life skills training and work preparedness seminars," Shanavia Moore, Director of Education and Workforce Development Center.
This partnership will also allow WorkFaith to continue to do what we're doing, while also greatly increasing our reach. We will be transitioning our monthly class, currently held at our office, to The Center for Hope (include location?). This will provide us with even more opportunities to reach more men and women, as we will have access to a wider pool of individuals facing employment barriers.
"We are excited about our new partnership with the The Salvation Army to help serve those that are in their education center programs to be able to obtain employment as they complete their education goals. Together, we hope to see more and more families reaching sustainable wages and enjoying God's good design for their lives," WorkFaith President and Founder, Keith Stanley.
The first WorkFaith workshop will be held at The Center for Hope in January 2018. We are so excited about this opportunity to help even more men and women discover God's good design for work and faith. Will you pray with us that God will prepare us for this exciting opportunity? Also, join us in praying for God's continued provision for WorkFaith Birmingham. Thank you for being part of what God is doing here in Birmingham by praying for and supporting this ministry.
The Salvation Army Center of Hope is located at: 2015 26th Avenue North, Birmingham, AL. 35234
My name is Jacqueline Moss, I am 35 years old, A funny, outgoing, and caring person, from here in Birmingham. I went to apply for family assistance (through what?) and was assigned to the Jobs Program and WOW, I met some of the most concerned, loving, caring people in my life. I was able to share my determination to succeed for myself and my children.
I was given a flyer about the Work Faith program from my jobs worker, and she said “ Jackie this is a big application packet, but if you want, you can fill it out and turn it in and see what happens because I think you would benefit from the program.” So there I was so curious and excited to fill out the application and turn it in, so I did and I met Ms. Kristi, she explained to me that I have to committed to this program. I told her I was not good in interviews, I always freeze up. So I started my classes hoping and praying to accomplish a goal: to learn how to not freeze during interviews. I can say I learned more than just that. I was able to learn more about God. I realized I have more abilities and skills that I really did not pick up on until this class. Work Faith is more than just a program. I was able to share things in my life that I do not talk about, and to see what I can improve and change within myself. I learned why knowing who I am goes a long way no matter what I’m doing, where I am, or who I’m around.
I want to pass what I have learned to others because this experience was a gift from God, I am a woman of God who is determined to succeed and be successful in life in a positive way. I know my struggle and it’s real, but I will always put God first in my life and keep moving forward knowing that he is always with me.
My Instructor Mrs. Smith was more than an instructor to me, she was a blessing, and so is everyone in Work Faith.
When I moved back to Birmingham in 2016, I already knew that I loved the city and wanted to plug into an organization that is making a difference. I first heard about WorkFaith Birmingham through a very close friend and was immediately drawn to the mission of this non-profit. I love that WorkFaith Birmingham is not just putting a Band-Aid on wide-spread issues in Birmingham, but they truly walk alongside individuals to help them get and keep a job, while also focusing on developing a biblical worldview and sharing the Gospel. I have been so amazed at the stories and transformation that happens as individuals go through the program and graduate.
I enjoy being able to use my marketing and PR background to develop ideas and campaigns for WorkFaith Birmingham. I am so thankful to be involved with an organization that allows me to use my gifts and abilities to play a small role in this big mission! I can't wait to see the ripple effects WorkFaith will have on Birmingham and beyond for years to come.
This Friday, November 17 our 57th WorkFaith class will graduate. The ceremony will take place at the Lovelady Center at 11:00am. Our guest speaker will be Executive Director of Serving You Ministries, John Gibson. We hope you can join us as we celebrate another group of WorkFaith Birmingham graduates.
Since launching in 2013, we have seen countless lives impacted through WorkFaith Birmingham, and just last month we reached more than 400 total WorkFaith graduates. Our mission is to empower adults facing employment barriers with the skills, competencies, and ethics they need to enjoy God's good design for work and faith. Each of these 400 plus graduates have been equipped with the tools they need and the confidence they often lack, preparing them to leave the program ready and eager to find and keep a job.
Every WorkFaith graduate has been empowered to enjoy transformed lives through work and faith. We constantly hear amazing testimonies from the men and women who complete the program.
"This class instilled in me hope, confidence, and a stronger faith in God, and I am so thankful for the opportunity I had to learn more about how to obtain a job." -Brooke
"I really enjoyed WorkFaith because it taught me how to talk about my past in a healthy way and gave me the tools I needed to get back into the workforce and be successful in life." -Lauren
"I've been at The Lovelady Center for almost 10 months and now have the best relationship with my children. I signed up for WorkFaith so I could learn the tools I need to be the best client rep ever. I've had the most amazing experience with Tamika and Pam. They have shown me how I can incorporate my faith into my everyday work life." -Danielle
There are many more Brookes, Laurens and Danielles out there who need a helping hand and a fresh start. We need your help to continue meeting these needs, so that the chronically unemployed in Birmingham have the opportunity to change the trajectory of their lives. Every dollar donated and every hour spent volunteering can make a difference in someone's life.
To read the complete October newsletter, click here.
Being a life-long resident of the greater Birmingham area, I have always had a great affinity for the City of Birmingham, including the people who live and work there. Before WorkFaith Birmingham was ever conceived, I had volunteered with urban ministries that focus on the people of Birmingham who have significant physical and spiritual needs. My wife Debbie had always been heavily invested in urban ministry so I also learned much from her. When Keith Stanley first mentioned to me a ministry such a WFB, I was extremely interested. As we met with leaders of a similar ministry in Texas, I began to see the potential for our great city.
Many people are talking about a “renaissance” in Birmingham today. I am grateful for the many commercial, construction and recreational advances that the city has benefitted from in recent years. But those nice things are only temporary. True God-honoring change in the city, that can endure from generation to generation, can be achieved only by people who come in faith to Jesus of Nazareth as Lord and Savior. WFB takes this hope to some of the “hard places” of Birmingham by providing soft-skills training, showing respect for each client, connecting them with potential employers, giving them a hope in spite of their past mistakes, and, most importantly, saturating all of the instruction and training with Bible-centered teaching about the God who loves.
As the ministry has progressed, the results have been astounding. God continues to show His favor upon our students, instructors and employers, and I am praying that WorkFaith Birmingham will obtain, in time, the resources necessary to expand beyond its present student capacity. I have been blessed by the relationships I have made through WFB, and I hope that many others will find ways to volunteer in this wonderful ministry.
My name is Jason and I’m 36 years old. I’m currently in a program called Jimmie Hale Mission. I’ve been involved with the mission before, but there came a time when I needed further help. My life began to turn for the worst when I thought I had everything going good, but I started to forget about God. You can easily wake up in the morning and forget about God and before you know it, the world has you right where it wants you.
Drugs played an important role in my life, using and selling. It was something I had to have on a daily basis. I started running with a cousin of mine where I learned the tricks of the trade. In this type of business you have to be on your guard. You have to be, how shall I say, TUFF. If someone detects some fear in you, then you might be in a world of trouble. At that time we had so much going for ourselves. I became popular in my city because I was considered to be his little soldier, but people still didn’t respect me so I was tested on a regular basis. I began to carry a gun on a daily basis. Before I knew it, I was in constant shooting battles that I began to love. It was the rush from it all.
Coming from being a kid that was bullied all the time growing up, when I started fighting and shooting back, I became the BAD GUY. And I loved it because there was no one to be found now that would pick on me. Cocaine became normal in my life. I felt like I needed it for the lifestyle that I was living. Then, my cousin which was much older than me was shot five times at close range. The doctor said that was the only thing that kept him alive.
When my father passed, I became lost. I began to feel left behind. My father was very important to me. I couldn’t get past my depression which caused me to use even more. My drug of choice changed from cocaine to crack cocaine. I began to look like a dead man walking. It caused me to miss out on a lot of things in my son’s life. I lost my loyalty and honesty that I had acquired as a child. I just wanted to die, but I didn’t have the heart to kill myself. I used to wish I could go to sleep and never wake up again.
I went to my pastor for help and that was the first time I was introduced to Jimmie Hale Mission. One of many great things that has happened in my life. This last go around has helped me in a way that I don’t even understand. Maybe it’s my faith now that I have in God.
I attended Workfaith Birmingham and I understand my purpose in life now. I have more joy and peace in my life. I know continuing to keep God as the head of my life will help me while I’m in the fire, not help me out the fire. In life there will always be hard times and He will always be there. Everything else will line up according to Him. My relationship with him is daily and I thank Him daily, even in my struggles.