Downtown Rescue Mission’s summer donations decrease as numbers increase

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Addiction and homelessness don't take a break, and neither does the Downtown Rescue Mission. Employees and volunteers work around the clock to provide second chances and hope for a future.

The mission's yearlong, faith-based recovery program costs the mission roughly $10,000 per person, per year. But, this is just one of the services offered to those who seek shelter at the mission.

"A big part of that budget is our thrift stores, and it takes a lot to run those thrift stores but they're also bringing in finances" President/CEO Keith Overholt said. "We have a lot of ministries and outreaches that we do that cost a lot of money; it costs 15-20 thousand dollars just to keep the electric on here."

The mission is providing a safe place for 30 percent more people this summer compared with last, but donations aren't increasing. In fact, they have received between 15 percent to 20 percent less for Summer 2016 compared with 2015.

"It's been a dry summer, that's for sure," Overholt said.

An average of 222 people find rest at the rescue mission every night. Out of that, 90 are women and children. The mission continues to do what it takes to keep taking people in, to keep helping and to keep hope alive.

"I just pray that the people of the Tennessee Valley don't forget this place; this place does a vital mission" Resident Randy Henson said.

The Downtown Rescue Mission is audited every year. The staff answers to a board of directors that makes sure they are operating within their means. The mission also receives the highest marks with the Better Business Bureau and high marks with Charity Navigator.

If you would like to sow into their services, or learn more, visit their website:

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