Making A Difference That Matters

Stories that Inspire.

Victories to Celebrate.

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Valerie Escapes Abuse, Refocuses on Her New Life

After more than 20 years in an abusive marriage, Valerie had hoped her pain and troubles were behind her. Unfortunately, violence would come back into her life with a vengeance. After seeing her boyfriend with another woman, an altercation broke out one night. Valerie’s boyfriend, along with his friends and sisters, beat her nearly to…

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Jeremy Returns to the Mission After Devastating Relapse

“You need God in your life.” That was the last thing Jeremy’s wife said to him before she left his life for good. “I didn’t think much of it at the time,” Jeremy said. “I do now.” Jeremy and his wife had it all by the time they were 30. They owned their home in…

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Overwhelmed By Love, Jacki Finds Hope At The Lighthouse

When Jacki, 25, found out she was pregnant, she was already three months along. Her fear was immediate—she’d been using meth, and she was worried for her unborn child. Jacki quit that day and remained clean for almost six months, until temptation overwhelmed her. “On October 15, 2017, I took one hit and I went…

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Florentino Makes Life-Changing Promise

As a 14-year-old messing around with a tagging crew, Florentino didn’t expect to get caught—or receive a steep one-year sentence. “I experienced a lot there—violence, fear,” he said. “It was a pretty scary place to go at the time.” Florentino got into trouble often, lengthening his sentence time and time again. By the time he…

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Program Graduate On His Way To A Bright Future

Van was called a “late bloomer.” Despite a large extended family that often drank and used drugs at get-togethers, Van managed to avoid that lifestyle until he was in his 20s. “I was born and raised in West Palm Beach, Florida, and there weren’t ever drugs around me,” Van said. But that changed when his…

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You’ll Never Go Through This Experience Unchanged

It’s been more than 11 years since Stuart, a member of Gold Coast Christian Church in Oxnard, had the idea that he and some of his congregants start volunteering at the Mission. Unfortunately, his idea didn’t catch on quite like he hoped. One Friday a month, Stuart showed up to serve meals. Rarely did anyone…

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Veteran Marine Hopes to end Cycle of Addiction, Homelessness

After 14 years serving in the Marine Corps, Robert got married, had a daughter, and worked hard for his family—but he was constantly struggling. It wasn’t until much later in life that Robert would realize he was battling with post traumatic stress disorder. “It was tough,” Robert said. “Prior to coming here I was working…

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Keeping His Children—and God—Top of Mind

Despite the challenges he’s facing—being away from his children and working on his recovery—Fitim seems to always have a smile on his face. His positivity comes from peace, he explains, because after two years of drug use and jail time, Fitim is healthy and looking forward to a new start. “I’m glad that God sent…

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David Feels A Spiritual Shift While Recovering At The Mission

David smoked marijuana for the first time when he was 10 and graduated to hard drugs after high school. He has overdosed nine times. He’s taken four ambulance rides. But he’s still alive. “The Lord said, ‘No. There’s something for you.’ And it took a long time for me to say, ‘OK, Lord, I’m going…

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Volunteer Spotlight: Deborah Has A Heart For The Underserved

When you share what God has done for you, it gives people hope, and it inspires change. That’s what Deborah, a volunteer at the Lighthouse for Women & Children, believes. She’s been volunteering there for years now, holding a class to support women who are struggling with myriad issues. “I’ve always had a heart for…

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A Commitment To Reconnect

Jennifer grew up in an environment she calls “dysfunctional.” Her mom was sober when she was going to church, but would stop attending—and start drinking—often. Her parents never married and all of her aunts and uncles used drugs and drank regularly. “I was probably 13 when I first tried marijuana, and I was 15 when…

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A Calling To Get Clean, And Serve

Jamaal grew up in a large Christian family: his mother and stepfather, five sisters and one brother. They all went to church, he and his siblings to private school. “My mom did everything to train us up in God,” Jamaal said with a laugh. They were also warned to stay away from drugs. Jamaal’s mother…

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