Volume 11 Number 13 | July 3, 2017 | www.agrm.org  



This issue of Street Smart is sponsored by: 

AGRM Invited to Meet with Secretary Price
AGRM President John Ashmen was is Washington, D.C., since the last issue of Street Smart to be part of a special meeting called by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price. John joined leaders from nine other organizations (including Salvation Army and Catholic Charities) to discuss how to combat America’s opioid calamity. (Opioid-related overdoses are now the number one killer of Americans under age 50!) Bob Gehman, CEO of Helping Up Mission (Baltimore, Maryland)—which runs a highly rated addiction recovery program—accompanied John and provided additional resources.

Numerous Screenings Now Taking Place
Throughout July and August, Pure Flix Entertainment is showing Same Kind of Different as Me in theaters all over the continent. Through AGRM, rescue missions are being invited to host Red Carpet advance screenings on October 18 to promote both the movie and their missions. The goal is to have 200 Red Carpet Events, and about 150 have already been set up. If you would like to have one in your city, email Mark P. Fisher at mark.fisher@pureflix.com. For additional information, please visit www.pureflixevents.com.

AGRM Board Meets to Discuss Values, Mission, Vision, and Branding
Chicago was the location for a special meeting last week of AGRM’s Board of Directors. The group met to review and update the association’s most important documents and to consider possible next steps for further developing the City Gate initiative that AGRM President John Ashmen presented at AGRM’s 2017 Annual Convention in Dallas. Member response—measured via the convention survey—has been very positive, with 87 percent of respondents saying they were “Energized/Excited” or “Intrigued/Optimistic.” Later this month, John will be sending an overview of the plan, as it is unfolding, and talking about next steps.

CEOs Invited to Gathering in Buffalo
Registration for AGRM’s CEO Summit is now open. Rescue mission chief executives are invited to convene at the all-suites Embassy Suites Downtown in Buffalo, August 29–31. This is a special opportunity for leaders to discuss key issues and examine trends and opportunities ahead for the ministries they shepherd. Register online now. A schedule for the event will be posted online before the end of the week.

P.S. This year’s registration includes a voyage on Maid of the Mist to get a close-up look at Niagara Falls!

Scholarship Funds Available for Certification Program
AGRM Certification is an effective risk-management program that significantly decreases a ministry’s exposure to potential legal and liability problems. What's more, insurance premium discounts are available for AGRM-certified member missions through the association’s Rescue Mission Insurance Program, administered by Merriam Insurance. And now, for a limited time, a scholarship provided by Merriam Insurance will help members in the insurance program who aren’t currently certified afford certification by funding up to $200 of the fee. If your mission is part of the AGRM Rescue Mission Insurance Program and desiring first-time certification, please enroll here.

Certified Missions Recognized at AGRM’s Annual Convention
The following member missions were recognized as Certified or Certified Excellent during AGRM’s convention in Dallas last month:

  • Hiway 80 Rescue Mission (Longview, Texas)
  • Rescue Mission Alliance (Oxnard, California)
  • Portland Rescue Mission (Portland, Oregon) 
  • Lexington Rescue Mission (Lexington, Kentucky)
  • The Bowery Mission (New York, New York)
  • Modesto Gospel Mission (Modesto, California)
  • Seattle's Union Gospel Mission (Seattle, Washington)
  • Phoenix Rescue Mission (Phoenix, Arizona)
  • Open Door Mission (Omaha, Nebraska)
  • Downtown Rescue Mission, Inc. (Huntsville, Alabama)
  • Kitsap Rescue Mission (Bremerton, Washington)
  • Victory Mission (Springfield, Missouri)
  • Miracle Hill Ministries, Inc. (Greenville, South Carolina)
  • John 3:16 Mission (Tulsa, Oklahoma)

Registration Open for AGRM’s District Conferences
Registration is open for AGRM’s fall district conferences. Each of AGRM’s nine districts will hold conferences in September and October, and AGRM’s regional coordinators and/or an AGRM staff member will be at each meeting to bring greetings and an update of what’s going on in the association.

To register for these grassroots events, visit www.agrm.org>Events and click on your district’s link. Many districts have early-bird registration deadlines of July 31.

Looking Down the Street…

  • Herb Smith, president/CEO of Los Angeles Mission (Los Angeles, California) would like to express his thanks for the prayers during his recent illness: “Thank you for all the calls, notes, and prayers during my Hoag Hospital endurance race! After 18 days of hospitalization I was released last Thursday with no additional medical requirements except follow ups.” Herb is home with no nursing, no rehab, and just instructions to not get too tired and to be quiet and “listen to my body.” His goal is to be back at work full time July 17.

  • Donnie Dee will take over as CEO of San Diego Rescue Mission (San Diego, California). Herb Johnson retired effective June 30. A celebration for Herb was held June 17, and received extensive local news coverage. Click here to see one report.

  • Bob Thompson is serving as the interim executive director at Union Gospel Mission of Salem (Salem, Oregon).

  • Lenawee County Mission (Adrian, Michigan) has changed its name to Neighbors of Hope.

  • Gospel Center Rescue Mission, Inc. (Stockton, California) is working to recover from an arson fire that occurred June 18. Damage wiped out the mission’s free clothing and household goods outreach to homeless and low-income residents of San Joaquin County, and temporarily suspended the SSI Representative Payee Services to 600 mostly homeless residents. CEO Wayne Richardson reports that the Grand Opening of the mission’s Recuperative Care Center took place as planned on June 22. 

  • Please welcome AGRM’s newest business member, Bold Leading (Grand Forks, North Dakota).  Dave Sena is the firm’s founder.

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AGRM Member Benefit: Leadership Advancement

AGRM believes that strong leadership makes for stronger missions. That’s why the association offers several benefits geared toward sharpening leaders. Executive leaders can take advantage of the annual CEO Summit, where they can go to discuss high-level issues, share ideas, get boldly honest, and network with people who understand the challenges of leadership; find thought-provoking insights and information in the Executive Session e-newsletter; work through key issues during one-to-one consultations with AGRM’s president; and dialog through the association’s Executive Leadership Connect Group. What’s more, AGRM offers a nine-month board acceleration program called Ripple Effect.

For more details on AGRM leader-specific services, send an email to memberservices@agrm.org.

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Strep A Outbreak in Montreal Concerns Shelter Workers
An outbreak of streptococcus A cases among homeless people in Montreal has left at least one man dead, CBC reports. Regional public health officials warned shelter operators last week to be vigilant after it confirmed that six linked cases of an invasive group of streptococcus A had surfaced among the city's homeless population since March, and authorities are investigating two more related cases, including one that resulted in a second death. Some shelter workers believe there are likely more cases than have been reported to date.

A nurse working with AGRM member Welcome Hall Mission was the first to raise the flag, allowing the shelter to warn others of the outbreak. CEO Sam Watts said the city's homeless are more at risk to contracting infections due to poor access to regular health care services and co-morbidities, like pre-existing skins conditions and diabetes, which make them vulnerable to diseases such as this type of streptococcus A.

Watts says the streptococcus A outbreak should signal the Quebec government that more resources need to be invested in frontline health care for homeless people. His greatest concern surrounds smaller shelters—ones that can house a dozen or two people at one time—because they may not be equipped to identify a case when it presents itself.

Homeless College Students More Common than Most Believe
Few researchers study homelessness among college students. Those who do say there is very little hard data, but they believe a surprisingly large number of college students are homeless. Thousands of students at community colleges nationwide could be considered homeless or precariously housed, because they have been thrown out of home, evicted, or sleep in a shelter, car, or abandoned building, NBC News reports

Some colleges have started to offer programs to help with housing or food needs, but more is needed. One study found that of the 33,000 students surveyed, about a third said they were “food insecure.” Other students might not have a bed at night because the local homeless shelter runs out of room while they're in classes. 

Society’s perception is that if you want to get out of poverty you go to college. But the reality is, it’s not until you complete a degree, and often times not even for several years afterward that college impacts income.

Summer Jobs No Longer a Focus for Teens
Forty years ago, nearly 60 percent of U.S. teenagers were working or looking for work during the summer months; last year, just 35 percent were, according to an article in Time. The jobs are there, but the applicants are not. In a national online survey for CareerBuilder.com conducted in February and March, 41 percent of companies said they planned to hire seasonal workers—up sharply from 29 percent in 2016. 

More and more, jobs historically done by vacationing students are being taken by older Americans forced to extend their working lives, or foreigners looking for their chance. At the same time, for many young Americans a heavily scheduled school year—college preparation, sports, volunteer work—are also determining what one does on summer vacation.

The competitive college process puts a premium on students’ extracurricular and volunteering work. And summer school, once seen as a punishment, now functions as an academic accelerator; 40 percent of 16- to 19-year-olds were enrolled in school last July.


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Majority Uninformed and Unprepared for Long-Term Care
A growing number of Americans age 40 and older think Medicare should cover the costs of long-term care for older adults, according to a poll conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, reports U.S. News & World Report. Most older Americans mistakenly believe they can rely on Medicare already, the poll shows, while few have done much planning for their own long-term care.

More than half of older Americans—56 percent—think the federal government should devote a great deal or a lot of effort to helping people with the costs of long-term care, and another 30 percent think it should make a moderate effort to do so. Seventy percent of older Americans say they favor a government-administered long-term care insurance program, up from 53 percent who said so a year ago. 

Fifty-seven percent plan to rely on Medicare quite a bit or completely for their own ongoing living assistance if and when they need it, even though Medicare does not cover most nursing care or home health aides. Just 25 percent plan to rely on Medicaid. Medicaid is much more likely to pay for long-term care, but is only available to lower income and disabled individuals and families.

Two-thirds of Americans age 40 and up say they've done little or no planning for their own long-term care needs. Just a third have set aside money to pay for nursing care or home health aides, less than half have talked to their families about their preferences for receiving long-term care and most have not created a living will or advance treatment directive. In addition, two-thirds of older Americans think the country as a whole is not ready for the rapid growth of the older adult population over the coming decades.

Acceptance of Gay Marriage Grows in U.S.
In the two years since same-sex marriage was legalized nationwide, support for it has surged even among groups that recently were broadly opposed, according to a new national survey from Pew Research Center, reports NBC News.

The survey found that overall, 62 percent of Americans now support same-sex marriage, and for the first time, a majority of blacks and Baby Boomers support allowing gays and lesbians to wed. Some staunch opponents of gay marriage are now focusing their efforts on trying to provide legal protections to civil servants, merchants, and other business people who do not want to provide services to same-sex couples.

According to the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law, there are now more than 547,000 same-sex married couples in the U.S., including at least 157,000 couples who married in the past two years. 

Possible Food Stamp Cuts Affect Retailers as Well as Consumers
A recent suggested budget cut calls for a $191 billion cut to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program—commonly referred to as food stamps—between 2018 and 2028, CNBC reports. The Congressional Budget Office said the average food stamp benefit is $252 per month. If the SNAP budget proposal passes, the monthly amount would fall by 31 percent to an average $173 a month.

Retail consultancy AlixPartners estimated that retail collectively stands to lose $70.7 billion over the decade if the proposed cuts take place, because for every dollar of benefit reduction or spending, there's about a 37-cent loss in grocery sales. Wal-Mart makes up the largest share of food stamp redemptions. Target sees the second-largest food stamp redemption in the superstore and supercenter category. Low-priced grocery store chain Aldi would see the third-largest impact, and Kroger comes in fourth.

But the potential reduction in the government's SNAP program will likely have ripple effects beyond those retailers that sell food and drinks, it's just harder to pinpoint and quantify. With less money available to spend on food, consumers tend to cut back on things like eating at restaurants, while increasing their use coupons and buying private label products. Some stores, such as Wal-Mart, do see benefits as shoppers switch from one retailer to another to find bigger discounts. 

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The following job positions are currently open at AGRM member missions. Please visit www.agrm.org/careers to view full descriptions and to apply. Click here for instructions on using AGRM's Recruiting Center to post open positions for your mission.

Advancement Relations Officer (Major Donor Rep): City Gospel Mission, Cincinnati, OH

Care Support Specialist: Light of Life Ministries, Inc., Pittsburgh, PA

Case Manager - Men's Center: Everett Gospel Mission, Everett, WA

Christian Life Recovery Program Supervisor, F/T: Open Door Mission, Rochester, NY

Christian Life Recovery Program Supervisor, P/T: Open Door Mission, Rochester, NY

Cook: Hope Ministries, Pleasant Hill, IA

Cook: Light of Life Ministries, Inc., Pittsburgh, PA

Detail Supervisor Technician: Union Gospel Mission (Spokane), Spokane, WA

Development Associate: The Path of Citrus County, Beverly Hills, FL

Development Director: Modesto Gospel Mission. Modesto, CA

Development Director: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Development Officer: Good News Rescue Mission, Redding, CA

Director of Development: Rescue Mission of Middle Georgia, Macon, GA

Director of Development: Rockford Rescue Mission Ministries, Inc., Rockford, IL

Director of Development & Community Relations: Good News Rescue Mission, Redding, CA

Donor Relations Coordinator: Jimmie Hale Mission, Birmingham, AL

Driver, Food Pantry & Distribution Center: Bay Area Rescue Mission, Richmond, CA

Executive Director: Career Cross Training for Open Door Mission, Rochester, NY

Facilities Maintenance Associate: The Bowery Mission New York, NY

Facilities Manager: Hope Ministries, Pleasant Hill, IA

Facilities Manager: The Bowery Mission, New York, NY

Faith Community Nurse - Guest Services, Good News Rescue Mission, Redding, CA

Family Support Worker (Days:Fri-Tue): Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Guest Services Assistant - Women's Shelter: Good News Rescue Mission, Redding, CA

Health and Wellness Center Manager: San Francisco City Impact, San Francisco, CA

Kitchen Manager: Bread of Life Mission, Holbrook, AZ

Maintenance (Days:Tue-Sat): Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Men's Center Case Manager : Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Men's Center Support Staff (Overnights): Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Men's Center Support Worker (Evenings): Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Men's Center Support Worker (split-shift)  Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Night Supervisor: Bread of Life Mission, Holbrook, AZ

Overnight Supervisor: Hope Gospel Mission, Eau Claire, WI

Program Director/Associate Director: King's Gospel Mission, Hanford, CA

Rebuilding Lives Center Case Manager  Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Receiving Clerk  Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Recovery Program Coordinator: Westminster Rescue Mission, Westminster, MD

Rescue Mission Director: San Francisco City Impact, San Francisco, CA

Resident Advisor (Evenings)  Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Resident Advisors: Hope Gospel Mission, Eau Claire, WI

Resident Assistant, Center for Women & Children: Bay Area Rescue Mission, Richmond, CA

Residential Coordinator_Cornerstone Manor Facility: Buffalo City Mission, Buffalo, NY

Shelter Desk Manager: Jericho Road Ministries, Inc., Brooksville, FL

Sous Chef  Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

Thrift Store Supervisor: Central Coast Super Thrift, Santa Maria, CA

Volunteer Coordinator (Days:Tue-Sat): Open Door Mission, Omaha, NE

VP of Advancement: Water Street Ministries, Lancaster, PA

Women's New Life Recovery Program Case Manager: Good News Rescue Mission, Redding, CA

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For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised
(2 Corinthians 5:14–15, ESV).

When you wake up every morning, what’s the first thing you think of? When you make a decision, what’s the motivating factor? These are both important questions we should be asking ourselves. The Apostle Paul tells us what the answer should be if we are Christians, that “the love of Christ controls us.”

This “love of Christ” can be present in two ways. First, it is that we understand the love Christ had for us through his death. Second, it is that our understanding of His love brings us to love Him, and then our love of Jesus controls us. It can be a struggle though, to envision what this love looks like.

Often when we hear the word love, we think of romantic notes, bouquets of flowers, or even “puppy-dog” eyes for someone. But when we only think of love in these ways, we do it a great disservice, especially considering we don’t always have intense emotions or feelings directed toward Jesus. Paul’s words today should help use to realize that this love is not simply a feeling for someone, but action that stems from “abiding” in his love (John 15:9).

Used with permission from Daily Devotionalswww.shortdailydevotions.com.

To contribute: If you would like to write a devotional thought for StreetLight, please make it about 200 words and include at least one Bible verse or passage, and submit via

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All Scripture quotations taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, unless otherwise noted. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

Street Smart is sent to you as a member service of AGRM, and is published on the 1st and 15th of each month (unless those dates fall on a weekend or holiday). The content does not necessarily represent the views of or imply endorsement by AGRM. To submit items for publication, e-mail editor@agrm.org. To unsubscribe, email unsubscribe@agrm.org.