In the mid 1980's a small group of Christian men began talking about what could be done to help the needy in our city. They stepped out in faith, naming their work, Open Arms Mission, incorporated as a charity, purchased a building and began helping the less fortunate. In early 1987, a Director was hired and the hours of operation increased. In those early years, our food bank served approximately 80 families each month. Those numbers grew to 200 households by the mid 1990's. Assistance requests have continued to increase since then.
In 2008, we purchased a property on Crowland Avenue and opened Redeemed Goods. Redeemed Goods is a thrift store that provides training opportunities for retail and warehousing positions and low cost furniture, clothing and household goods. If a client in crisis is unable to purchase items, we can provide free clothing, furniture and household items through our voucher system.
In 2011, we expanded again to our third property on Forks Road West. The large country property allows for excellent warehousing for our food bank, ability to sell large furniture items direct from the warehouse and have innovative programs like our Learning Garden that provides fresh produce for our Food Bank. Redeemed Lives, our fast growing men's ministry that meets in the Barn, meets at our Ministry Campus on Wednesday evenings.
Open Arms Mission receives no regular government funding. We are supported solely by individuals, organizations, churches and businesses in our community. We are a volunteer driven organization with few staff members keeping our operating costs as low as possible.