New apartments help homeless with next steps at Downtown Rescue Mission

Top Stories

A ceremony was held to mark the next step on the path to a new life for the men of the Downtown Rescue Mission. They’re taking full advantage of one thing that not everybody gets– a second chance.

We spoke with Mark Gradkowski, the executive VP and CAO of Downtown Rescue Mission. He tells us that these transitional apartments are helping the men prepare for a life beyond homelessness. He adds, “They can now move into something a little closer to what they’re going to deal with outside of our gate” 

Downtown rescue mission is opening the doors to their new “Grad House”– a 4-unit apartment building near their campus. It’ll be used to house the men who have graduated their 12-month recovery program. Eight men will be moving in the building within the next two weeks.

Mark Gradkowski tells us the men and women in their Life Transformation and Recovery Program have overcome “drug addiction, alcohol addiction, anger issues– things like that. Just life things that have taken them over.” 

The men will be moving from a housing dorm on the main campus, across the street to brand new units. They can stay there for up to a year. 

The women who have graduated the Life Transformation and Recovery Program, still live on campus, currently. But, the Downtown Rescue Mission is revamping the “Gately House” — another building near the main campus. They’re turning it into even more housing units for the women who finish their recovery program. 

Mark Gradkowski tells us the new units are equipped with new HVAC systems, new hot water heaters” and much more. He adds, “We redid the floors, the cabinets, the countertops. We put all new furniture in.”

For men like Corey Bullard, who works security for the mission, and graduated the recovery program just 6 months ago– it’s a dream come true. Cory tells us, “Being able to make one more step on my journey is nice, it’s really exciting.” 

He says these apartments help show people entering the program, that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. He adds, “It doesn’t matter everything else that’s going on around you. You want to finish this because you want to live a life that glories God and not just yourself.” 

©TEGNA Inc. 2019. All Rights Reserved.

Get our WZDX News & Weather Apps