The Holiday season is a time that is traditionally about giving and caring for others. In recent years though, the hype has been focused around getting the best Black Friday deals; filling one’s materialistic needs.
Volunteering your time during the holidays can be the best gift of all for those that are less fortunate, and it doesn’t cost a penny!
At the Miami Rescue Mission, an organization that has been serving South Florida since 1922, anyone can “give the gift of giving” by volunteering to help recovering substance-abuse users and homeless individuals who reside in the locations of Miami, Hollywood, and Pompano Beach.
“Our volunteers create change and impact lives,” said Lynette Michie, the Volunteer Special Events-Coordinator.
The Miami Rescue Mission celebrated its annual “Great Thanksgiving Banquet,” a tradition that helped serve 3,000 meals on Thanksgiving Day to its homeless men, women and families. Hundreds of volunteers, that had been signed-up months in advance, helped make the event a success.
“Without our volunteers, we wouldn’t be able to do everything that we do,” Michie said.
On December 24, the Miami Rescue Mission will be hosting a holiday celebration for its members, providing entertainment, food and gifts for everyone. The Miami Rescue Mission has a goal of collecting over 3,000 gifts for its men, women and children during the “Gifts that Change Lives” drive. Monetary and gift donations are both accepted, as well as offering support through volunteering.
“We don’t just encourage volunteers during the Holiday season though, we encourage them all year long,” Michie said.
Throughout the year, the Miami Rescue Mission has its doors open to accepting new individuals out of homelessness.
Every day, volunteers help by serving food, collecting and sorting through items for various drives, and teaching the mission statement that “No One is Homeless,” through the many recovery and education programs that are provided. Classes are offered to members to help them receive their GED’s, prepare them for interviews and teach them how to use computers.
Future volunteers of the Miami Rescue Mission must attend a one-time orientation to get started. For more information on how to get involved, call 305-571-2227 or check out their website at www.miamirescuemission.com.
Written by Kathleen Devaney
Photos by Miami Rescue Mission