Volunteers Cut $2,000 Shelter Repair Down to Less Than $50!


The bathroom floor in the shelter had been leaking for a while and Love INC received a professional quote for over $2,000 in repairs, with the possibility of more depending on the extent of the damage.

Trying to save some money, we asked some churches if they had any volunteers willing to donate their labor. Ray and Ashley Helgeson from Rock Point Church jumped at the chance!

Within two weeks the bathroom floor was completely repaired, and they found no additional damage. The best part: the final bill was only $46.58.

Join us in thanking the Helgeson's for their precious time and labor. The ladies in the shelter have a functioning bathroom again!

Friends Became Family This Past Thanksgiving!

Sometimes the holiday season is the darkest time of the year. It was that case for a lot of clients AND volunteers last year. But one volunteer took what was supposed to be a sad holiday and with the help of the Lord, made it memorable for the guests in the shelter:

“As we were concluding our weekly Bible study one Wednesday, I asked the ladies living at the transitional house if they had any Thanksgiving plans. 

The feeling in the room quickly shifted. The ladies’ countenances went from incredible joy, having just enjoyed a wonderful study and discussion of the 13th chapter in the book of John, to a heaviness and sorrow. 

For some, tears began to flow, and others grew quiet. As I began to probe a bit I learned that as blessed as they feel to be living in the house, this year they would not be enjoying a “Hallmark” Thanksgiving with their families. 

For some, distance would prohibit them from being with their family. For others, broken relationships would be the cause. 

This Thanksgiving my husband and I were going to be alone due to both of those reasons. We had decided that an early dinner at J’s diner and some football on TV would be the extent of our festivities this year.

When one of the ladies exclaimed that she would be at the house and anyone else who wanted to join her could. She said that she would be making potato salad. I asked if she would adopt me and my husband for the day. She beamed and said of course!

Soon everyone was piping in with what they wanted to make.

Thursday afternoon, as we sat around the table enjoying the feast that the Lord had provided, we reflected on the fact that like the original pilgrims, each one of us had left our former homes to start a new life. 

Sometimes it’s really hard and we miss those whom we can’t be with, but we were all grateful for the new family that God handpicked to travel this journey with us. Our hearts were truly full and our day was wonderfully blessed.”

A Complete Transformation

When we met Teresa she was severely traumatized after experiencing homelessness. She had worked her whole life and due to severe, drug-resistant depression, she found herself without a job and no place to live.

“I’ve had so many jobs in my life. I’ve worked since I was 15, I’ve been on my own since I was 17, I’ve always had a job.” Her situation was incredibly difficult to process.

She was admitted into the Transitional Living Program (TLP) and upon arrival rated herself a 0 out of 10. She struggled to make eye contact with anyone, and due to anxiety and depression could barely complete the smallest task.

Through constant support and coaching from the Love INC staff, Teresa began to see changes both inside and out.

She started walking outside most days, applying for jobs and going to Relational Ministry and other community classes to interact with other people in our community going through similar situations.

Cooking, completing house chores and yard work became a regular activity. She started to volunteer at local service agencies while looking for work. Our Transitional Living Coach even commented “Teresa is looking the best she has since arriving here almost 10 months ago. She is on task and engaged!”

The most exciting (among many) moment came when Teresa was hired at a service agency to be a resource advocate for Homeless and Housing!

“God has put me in a position to be a resource advocate for homeless and housing! Getting me back out in the workforce in something that is just right there, I’m in it, I can relate. And putting me with people just like me! I’ve walked in their shoes, I’m still in their shoes, I understand completely.”

After working for several months, Teresa was able to save enough money to move into next step housing at the Hillside Inn. She is paying rent and thriving!

Teresa is just another example of God’s incredible transforming power. Just one look at Teresa and you would know that she is a new person, inside and out.

"Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.” - Ezekiel 36:26

I Feel Like I’ve Been Saved: Dawn’s Successful Graduation from the TLP

When we first met “Dawn,” her life was unstable and chaotic. She was staying at friend’s houses or hotels while trying to find a job to keep her and her children’s lives afloat. When she had to give her children up to the foster care system, she knew it was time to get some help.

Once Dawn was admitted into the Transitional Living Program (TLP), she felt immediate relief. Melanie, the Transitional Living Coach, was able to give her realistic goals to be able to get her back on her feet again.

“I didn’t have anybody to help me before, Melanie gave me hope. I had a sense of purpose.”

When Melanie saw Dawn’s drive to not only get her life back on track but to regain custody of her children, she knew exactly who would be the best mentor for Dawn. Kim has a similar story and has been successfully living on her own with her children since leaving the shelter almost three years earlier.

With Melanie and Kim by her side, in just six months Dawn was able to find and keep a job, save enough money to move into her own house and is well on her way to getting her kids back. Praise God!

When asked how her relationship with God was before and after her time in the TLP, “I was kind of close to God, but now I’m reading my Bible more and I’m much closer to Him. I feel like I’ve been saved” she said with tears in her eyes.

While Dawn is on her way to independence and financial freedom, she knows that she still has Melanie, Kim and all the staff and volunteers at Love INC as her support. “While Dawn thinks that I inspire her, it’s actually the opposite. She inspires and motivates me every day” Kim noted. “She can’t escape us!”

Dawn has a special message for every volunteer and donor who made this journey possible: “thank you for helping me walk through this part of my life. I look forward to what happens next.”

“For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. Your restoration is what we pray for.” -2 Corinthians 13:9 (ESV)



We wanted to give you another praise-worthy update from Dawn’s story last week:

The same day that Dawn gave us a list of all the furniture and other items she needs for her new apartment, another client called wanting to donate many of the same items she needs.

We were able to connect the two of them, and a team of volunteers from Newberg Christian Church is going to help facilitate the movement of the furniture from the other client's storage unit!