I begin with my place of business, Mercy House in Orange County, CA.
Mercy House was started in 1990 by Father Jerome Karcher, a catholic priest at St. Vincent Depaul in Huntington Beach, CA. Father Jerome saw a need for transitional shelters for Orange County's homeless population and took action. He gathered a Board of Directors, many of whom are still active members, and hired his first employee, a 25 year old idealist by the name of Larry Haynes.
Larry is currently the Executive Director of the agency.
Breaking through the stereotype of the homeless person, Mercy House has successfully set a standard in its services to homeless men, women and children. It is the Mercy House mission to be a leader in ending homelessness for those who enter its system of care by providing a unique system of dignified housing alternatives, programs and supportive services. At Mercy House, the phrase “We help people find their way back home,” expresses its philosophy to help people find their way to permanent housing which they can call “home.”
From that initial idea of reaching out to the marginalized that Father Jerome had in 1990 and led to beginning services to the homeless community, Mercy House has always relied on the goodness of people's hearts. This compassion allows many men, women and children to experience their inherent dignity through programs leading to self-sufficiency and independent living through work and education.
I am extremely proud to be a Grant Writer for this organization and go home every day knowing that without some of these I do, none of this would be possible. It's a rather amazing feeling.
Some success stories: