07/25/2020 | August 2020 Issue
August 1st is the deadline for organizations serving prisoners, ex-prisoners, women in recovery and military veterans to submit their grant requests to Serving USA in hopes of being funded and partnered with us in 2021.
We received well over 100 applications from current, past and potential new partners. The requests have been coming in throughout the year and our team has been working diligently to review, assess and vet each request.
This month and next, our program team and board of directors will be making final decisions and we appreciate your prayers for us to have insight and wisdom. There are so many outstanding organizations out there making a difference.
Two such organizations are featured in this newsletter. I know you will be encouraged to learn more about New Beginnings and Gabe’s Homes.
Saint John's Back to School Drive
At Saint John’s, Sacramento’s largest residential program for formerly homeless women and children, kids are immediately encircled with the love, structure and support they so desperately need and that every child deserves.
And, to meet their students’ academic, social and emotional needs they are working hard to create independent, safe classroom settings for 10 grades populated with computers and school supplies on their campus.

Please consider supporting their 'Back to School' drive, where even $25 provides one hour of extended learning for a classroom of kids.

*Please also make note, Saint John's Polo for Real Change has been shifted to a virtual event.
Forgotten Children Inc's 5th Annual Charity Golf Tournament
Forgotten Children, Inc. needs your help more than ever. During this time of uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, emergency calls to their center have increased by 40% since last year.

Monday, November 2nd, FCI will host their 5th Annual Charity Golf Tournament at the beautiful Seacliff Country Club in Huntington Beach, CA. Funds raised will go toward rescuing, restoring and educating victims of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation and to support programs in Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino County.

Featured Partner
New Beginnings Gold Country
Nestled in the Sierra foothills between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe, New Beginnings is a place that offers the physical and spiritual space a person might need who is trying to start again. Founder Randy Haskins invites those coming out of incarceration who are willing to trust in the transformative power of Christ to join with him and his team in Placerville.
Randy has drawn from his own journey through incarceration and rebirth in Christ to establish a path for others to follow. He has established a home for men that has a current capacity of 11 and another for women which houses six.

New Beginnings also has a thrift store which employs a number of clients and has space for an automotive repair shop. And, more recently opened a higher-end boutique in downtown Placerville. 
Last year, New Beginnings hosted a fashion show fundraiser which brought in a capacity crowd from the area to highlight the latest fashions from community clothing retailers. 

The event raised several thousand dollars and lifted awareness for the organization throughout the Placerville area.
When New Beginnings was highlighted in the Serving USA newsletter in 2018, the story of Emma Burns, who was 21 at the time, was featured. She had come out of juvenile hall in 2015 and was searching for a clearer understanding of God and His desire for her life. She progressed as a client earning a driver’s license and has beginning classes at Folsom Lake College. She has since earned a certificate in human resources.  

After her first job working at the New Morning Shelter for at-risk kids Emma became a supervisor at the New Beginnings Thrift Store. More recently she was promoted to become operations manager overseeing the day-to-day activities of the organization. But her most exciting news is likely that she got married in 2019 and is now the proud mother of 3-month-old Liam.
Staying the course in life is challenging but it can be so rewarding. It starts with a New Beginning and allows a gracious God to order our steps.
Featured Partner
Gabe's Homes
Our facilities provide residents the opportunity to build safe and structured relationships in a stable environment and leave our program with a solid set of life-skills. Ultimately, we want each of our residents to build a stronger relationship with God and through our partnership with The Urban Ministry Institute of Orange County (TUMI-OC), we have had several residents graduate the TUMI program and become leaders in the faith. To date, hundreds of residents have successfully transitioned through our program and those with a history of substance abuse have some of the lowest relapse rates in the area.
Like so many others, COVID-19 has affected Gabe’s Homes primarily through reductions in employment and services for our residents. Residents rely on their jobs and county services to provide them a stable source of income and to maintain the necessary daily structure in their lives.
Despite these challenges, our residents have learned to adapt through careful guidance and have chosen to put their energy into serving others in areas such as the local food pantry and by partnering with local churches to serve the homeless.
Last month, our Women’s program successfully completed their annual three-day team building trip at the Colorado River.

Not only did they get plenty of fun and sun in the desert, our female residents were given the opportunity to highlight their independence and individual growth through leading team building exercises with the other residents. 

The event was a huge success and we are looking forward to our next men’s event which is still being planned for the fall.

As we navigate these trying times, we continue to look for partnerships in our community to expand our reach to all those in need.

We are thankful for the blessing that Serving USA has been and the for the resources and partnerships they have provided to us!