Step 5

Mentor individuals and families who are experiencing homelessness.

Most successful people can point back to one or more mentors who modeled positive attitudes and behaviors, believed in them, and encouraged them along the way. But the majority of men and women experiencing homelessness never had mentors like these. One of the keys to restoring them is to connect them with mentors who can help them rebuild their lives.

Union Rescue Mission is partnering with local churches, faith communities, and other agencies to connect families experiencing homelessness with mentors who will walk with them as they transition out of experiencing homelessness. We also encourage faith communities to reach out to one local family on the verge of experiencing homelessness every year and help restore them to health and stability before they lose their home. We must focus on prevention and recovery simultaneously.

Action Steps

  • Commit to influencing someone’s life in a positive way. Contact Union Rescue Mission’s Learning Center to see how you, your business, or your faith community can get involved.
  • Mentor a student in our career center. For more information, contact Jenny Kershner at or call 213-347-6300 ext. 4400.
  • Get involved with single moms and children at Hope Gardens Family Center, which helps these precious women and their families get back on their feet. For more information, contact Latonja Lindsey at or call 213-347-6300 ext. 7101.
  • Arrange a meeting with your faith community and local homeless agency. Faith communities can offer marriage counseling, financial counseling, parenting classes, and fatherhood initiatives to strengthen families, prevent family disintegration, and address the root causes of homelessness.
  • Reach out to neighbors/families in need and help connect them with your faith community and other local resources.

Homelessness has a face, maybe someone’s brother, or sister or daughter.