Volume 11 Number 21 | November 1, 2017 | www.agrm.org  




This issue of Street Smart is sponsored by: 


AGRM Elections Begin Next Week
One of the privileges of being in an association is voting for board representatives and local officers. This year, members in the Bluegrass, Great Lakes, and Deep South districts are electing cabinet officers and a board representative, and all AGRM members are electing an at-large board member. The elected officers will serve a three-year term, starting January 1, 2018, and running through December 31, 2020. Please watch for your email ballot coming on Tuesday, November 7.

Letting You in on a Little Secret
Early Bird registration, which will be available online only, will run November 15 to December 15. That means you can start registering for AGRM’s 2018 Annual Convention—and save with Early Bird rates—just two weeks from today.

Mark November 15 on your calendar, along with the dates of the convention itself: June 12–15 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Much more info to come in the weeks ahead!

Same Kind of Different as Me Follow-Up
To all who participated in the approximately 170 special showings of the movie Same Kind of Different as Me two weeks ago , thanks you for making those events so successful! We’ve heard some amazing reports of what the red-carpet events did to bring in donors and volunteers and raise self-awareness. Here ’s one such account, as it played on local TV. We’ve had more than a couple of you stay that this was the best event you’ve ever run. One mission rented 46 theaters in their city, with incredible results! 

If the movie is playing in your city, please take advantage of this rare opportunity and send (or take) people to see it. Help move the needle on this project comfortably in the black for our friends who invested heavily in it. 

Finally, AGRM has worked with our friends at Pure Flix to develop a survey that those who held red-carpet events will be receiving. Please watch for that and make sure to complete it in a timely fashion. You information will help as we develop similar partnerships in the future. 

Movie Soundtrack Available 
By the way, Sony Music has released the official soundtrack album for Same Kind of Different as Me. The album features the film’s original music composed by John Paesano (Daredevil, The Maze Runner, Pacific Rim Uprising, The Defenders). Also included is the original song Stubborn Angels performed by Brad Paisley, as well as Ann Peebles’ Until You Came into My Life. The soundtrack was released digitally October 20. 

AGRM Receives Platinum Seal of Transparency from Guidestar
AGRM has achieved the 2017 Platinum Seal of Transparency on GuideStar. What does that mean? Guidestar says this level means: 

  • Timely and accurate information about AGRM is now reaching  more than 7 million annual visitors to GuideStar. Plus, tens of millions  use the more than 200 charitable websites that share GuideStar’s data, including: AmazonSmile, Facebook, and Network for Good. 

  • GuideStar Profiles with a Platinum Seal get two times more views than other profiles.

  • Helping the sector shift from a destructive focus on overhead ratios to a focus on making progress and getting results.

AGRM Featured on PureFlix.com
We are happy to announce that AGRM is the featured partner on PureFlix.com and its related social media sites. This is the company’s main site where members log in to view movies and other shows (similar to Netflix). The promotion began October 20 and runs through the Thanksgiving holiday, giving the association prime exposure at an important time of the year.

Did You Take Any Photos at Your District Meeting?
If so, we’d like to see them. Classroom shots, mealtime pics, close-ups, or whatever, please email copies to AGRM so we can use them in future communications and thank yous to sponsors. Email them to Director of Communications Brad Lewis at blewis@agrm.org

Looking Down the Street…

  • Brandon Wirth has been named the new CEO at Mission Solano (Fairfield, California).

  • Tyler Perkins is serving as interim CEO at Idaho Falls Rescue Mission (Idaho Falls, Idaho).

  • To address the multiple needs associated with addiction and homelessness—particularly the rapidly growing opioid epidemic—Light of Life Rescue Mission (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) has created a local helpline to assist anyone in the throes of addiction, experiencing difficult times, or actively searching for ways to help loved ones or friends. For more information, watch a powerful video of the new program.

  • Gospel Center Mission (Stockton, California) celebrates its grand re-opening after an arson fire that took place last June. This building is one of eight major structures that comprise about 60 percent of a city block. The mission’s administration building houses its corporate offices, free clothing outreach to the community, and an SSA Representative Payee Service provided to about 600 mostly homeless or at risk homeless people. Watch a video that shows the mission’s journey from devastation to God's amazing ability to raise the administration building from ashes to a beautiful renovated interior.

  • An in-depth report on the role The Foundry Ministries (Bessemer, Alabama) plays in mental health help in a faith-based recovery program, highlighting one of the program graduates, was featured in a local TV report and in a article at Huffington Post.

  • Tony Marciano, president/CEO of Charlotte Rescue Mission (Charlotte, North Carolina) was on the David Chadwick show on WBT AM 1110. The topic was “Someone in your life struggles with addiction.” You can listen to the program by clicking here.

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AGRM Member Benefit: Social Media Promotion
AGRM regularly and frequently posts and tweets to bring awareness to issues related to the work of our members. With a mix of stats and stories, AGRM’s social media engagement reaches thousands of people each day and points them toward our directory of missions or to other resources where they can learn more. Find us on Facebook at AGRMNews or follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @AGRMNews.

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Millennials Take Unique View of Nonprofit Giving
Why are Millennials—who are perceived as one of the most cause-driven, socially motivated, and generous generations—so difficult to engage financially? An article in Forbes unpacks the types of giving that Millennials tend toward.

  1. Socially responsible consumption: Millennials want the option to buy goods that promise a one-to-one match, employ marginalized groups at a fair wage, and more. They are still consuming the same products they would otherwise, but want to feel good doing it.

  2. Social media advocacy: “Slacktivism” was coined as a pejorative term that describes actions to support a social issue requiring little effort and creating little effect. There are some advocacy actions that require little effort, but in large numbers can create significant change.

  3. Saving: Millennials grew up in a time of relative scarcity. The Great Recession changed how they view money. Millennials are called an emerging generation of super savers, and on average, they begin saving at age 22, which is five years earlier than Generation X and 13 years earlier than Baby Boomers. Many Millennials view financial generosity as something that you do once you have achieved a certain professional or financial position. However, if you don’t exercise that generosity muscle when you are making a little, it will be very hard to begin a later age.

U.S. Resumes Accepting Refugees
The U.S. has announced that it will resume accepting refugees, but the government will continue assessing screening procedures for applicants from 11 nations deemed higher risk, according to a report in the Washington Post

The announcement comes as the 120-day freeze on refugee admissions was due to expire. Department of Homeland Security officials have been instructed to develop extreme vetting procedures to make sure radical Islamic terrorists do not take advantage of the program. 

Officials refused to identify the 11 nations that are considered higher risk, but they are presumed to include the Muslim-majority countries that have been targeted by the administration for travel restrictions. 

Tech Startup Creates Artificial Intelligence to Deal with Depression
Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, and it can kill. However, talking seems to help—especially under the guidance of a licensed mental health professional. Of course, therapy is expensive, inconvenient, and often hard to approach. A recent estimate suggests that of the roughly one in five Americans who have a mental illness, close to two-thirds have gone at least a year without treatment.

In a report by Business Insider, a new tech-based treatment for depression may offer more people treatment options. Woebot is an artificially intelligent chatbot designed using cognitive-behavioral therapy, one of the most heavily researched clinical approaches to treating depression.

Patients participating in a Woebot research group reported that they chatted with the bot every day and saw a significant reduction in their depressive symptoms. That's a promising result for a type of treatment whose results have so far been tough to quantify—there isn't much research comparing bot therapy with traditional human therapy.

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Gambling Addiction Rising Among Military Members
The National Council on Problem Gambling reports that studies find gambling-addiction rates among active-duty military and veterans are significantly higher than the general population. According to a report by The Day Publishing Company, some 36,000 active-duty members meet the criteria for a gambling problem. The council noted that some 3,000 slot machines are in place at military bases overseas, generating an estimated $100 million a year in profits.

Research published in the late 1990s found that the average rate of problem gambling across all armed services was estimated at 8.1 percent, roughly twice the rate in the U.S. adult population. Further, 7.1 percent of military personnel report having at least one serious gambling-related problem during their lifetimes.

However, researchers noted the small number of servicemen and women who get treatment for problem gambling. Treatment options for veterans and military personnel are lacking, especially overseas, and many in the military eschew treatment because of feelings of shame and secrecy. A government study published earlier this year found that only 514 active-duty servicemen and women were seen by the military health system for problem gambling during the 2011–2015 fiscal years.

Risk Factor for Drug and Alcohol Addition Increases in Affluent Families 
As drug overdose deaths have risen sharply in recent years, a pattern has emerged: Reflecting the historic losses felt by inner-city families, families in the suburbs are increasingly enduring a wave of drug deaths, as well.

According to a report by U.S. News, while higher income and education is often associated with better overall health, studies have found that kids living in affluent communities binge drink and smoke marijuana at higher rates than their peers in general. 

Rates of addiction among the older group of men and women were two and three times higher, respectively, than national norms. By the age of 22 years, rates of addiction to drugs or alcohol among women were between 11 and 16 percent, close to national norms; but the rates of addiction were 19 to 27 percent among men—about twice as high as national norms. 

Rising Rents Are Breaking Tenants 
Rents have increased rapidly across U.S. housing markets as the share of renting households has risen faster than the number of new units. In a report by Bloomberg, nearly one in five respondents reports struggling to make monthly payments.

While landlords seem to be succeeding at finding tenants who can keep up, the survey, by Apartment List, suggests escalating housing costs may be straining renters’ resources. Eighteen percent of respondents couldn’t pay the full rent due in at least one of the past three months, according to the poll of 40,000 renters. Of those who have registered for the listing site this year, 3.3 percent said they had been evicted in the past, up from 2.8 percent in 2015.

Among households earning up to $30,000 a year, 27.5 percent failed to pay the rent in full in at least one of the past three months. Among those earning $30,000 to $60,000, it was 14.8 percent. Even of those making more than $60,000 a year, it was 8.8 percent. 


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ACTS Workshop
The Association of Christian Thrift Stores (ACTS) will hold their Annual Workshop January 14–17, 2018 in Durham, NC. Participants will be staying at the Hilton Durham near Duke University. You can register online and get the hotel reservation information at actswebsite.com.

Cost of the Workshop and membership is $315.00 per person. The room rates for 2 double beds is $99.00 per night.

The Workshop cost includes eight training sessions, six meals, a tour of the Durham Rescue Mission’s Thrift Store Operations, and a dessert reception with our vendors. We hope to see you there if you have a thrift store or are considering opening a store to help fund your ministry. 


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.

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

Case Manager, Men's Shelter: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Chief Development Officer: Phoenix Rescue Mission, Phoenix, AZ

Chief Financial Officer: Jericho Road Ministries, Inc., Brooksville, FL

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

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

Development Director: Home of Grace, Vancleave, MS

Development Director: Waterfront Rescue Mission, Inc., Pensacola, FL

Development Officer: Good News Rescue Mission, Redding, CA

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

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

Director of Major Gifts: Waterfront Rescue Mission, Inc., Pensacola, FL

Director, Lighthouse for Women & Children: Rescue Mission Alliance, Oxnard, CA

Domestic Violence Advocate, Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Executive Director: Outreach Gospel Mission, Brookings, OR

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

Food and Beverage Driver: San Francisco City Impact, San Francisco, CA

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 Ministry Coordinator: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Major Gifts Officer: Seattle's Union Gospel Mission, Seattle, WA

Major Gifts Officer: Buffalo City Mission, Buffalo, NY

Overnight Supervisor: Hope Gospel Mission, Eau Claire, WI

Recovery Program Coordinator, Westminster Rescue Mission, Westminster, MD

Resident Advisors: Hope Gospel Mission, Eau Claire, WI

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

Sous Chef: Open Door Mission, Glens Falls, NY

Transportation Specialist: Union Gospel Mission (Spokane), Spokane, WA

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

Women's Recovery Counselor: Union Gospel Mission (Spokane), Spokane, WA

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The Touchstone

Just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy” (1 Peter 1:15–16).

A touchstone is a tablet of dark stone, finely grained, that is used for determining the quality of soft metals.

Primarily used in ancient Greece, touchstones provided a means for comparing the purity of precious metals such as gold or silver. This process is referred to as assaying.

The assayer would draw a pure sample of the precious metal across the touchstone, leaving a streak; he would then draw the metal being tested across the stone, leaving another streak. The residue left on the touchstone would be compared, thus allowing the assayer to determine the quality and purity of the new ore, whether high grade or low.

Scripture is our touchstone.

God has authored and inspired it through the pens of faithful men to reveal Himself to us.

He has shown us His holiness, His perfection, His grace, His justice, all of these facets of Himself and His character.

We must, like a piece of gold being tested, draw ourselves across the stone of the Bible. Instead of comparing ourselves with each other, we should look to God’s Word as the measure of our lives.

Don’t give your joy away to comparison against the lives of imperfect human beings, but instead compare yourself with Christ for a true measure of spiritual fruit.

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.