by: Pastor John Leon, Executive Director
Homelessness is painful. Homeless single mothers with children is desperation. This was a “God-ache” for Pastor Les Bailey, our founder of Albany Helping Hands. He wanted somehow to reach the entire family struggling with homelessness, particularly young single mothers with children, but knew the environment at the shelter was not conducive for such an undertaking. He knew, and he was right, children needed their own safe place with their mom to navigate life. A structure of love with personal discipline and routine would be the much needed order for mother and child.
Finally, today, the new “Bailey Home” brings his dream to a reality. It is a six-bedroom home, two and half-baths, a full kitchen with accessories, and provides two washers and dryers. This home will afford a maximum of ten occupants including a resident “House Mother.”
The Bailey Home will operate within the mission of Helping Hands, as it will serve to be a transitional home, providing a “helping hand” in restoring a mother’s life and that of her child to the life God has intended for them within a year’s goal. Various classes and counseling will be provided by AHH to ensure this vision—the very pulse of Pastor Bailey—will be realized in every mother who resides in this home.
The gratitude we have in making the Bailey Home a reality is deep. We need to say a “big” thank you to Dahled UP Construction, and particularly, Joel Dahl, our contractor, who generated over $78,000 in donated services and materials from 24 local businesses, highlighted in this newsletter. Joel set the example by donating over $15,000 from his own company. We thank all of them for their tremendous generosity.
We of course, must thank you…our donors who support our mission throughout the year. Without your diligent and faithful financial giving, none of this would have been possible. So, we hope you know how meaningful your contributions are which sustain the work we do for our community.
And yes, certainly, we are grateful to Pastor Bailey, and ultimately to God, for giving us a man with an extraordinary heart, for an extravagant vision of grace for the brokenhearted. We believe it is not coincidence, but divine prerogative the house used to begin sheltering the homeless over 30 years ago, serves now as a major piece to his original vision.
12 years ago, I will never forget, as Pastor Bailey mentored me, he led me on a tour of the house. He showed me, with satisfaction, where some 35-40 men would sleep. This included a view of the attic, in which he would try to provide shelter for as many as possible during the cold wintry months. If he was trying to teach me his vision, and leave me with an irretrievable sacred impression, he indeed succeeded.
How fitting it is that where the mission began, will now serve in giving single mothers with children hope for their future. This was the dream of Pastor Bailey, and when asked, what would he think if he could now see it become a reality? I suggest, he would have a great big smile of joy and eyes welling up with tears of gratitude!”
Finally, know it is humbling for the board, staff, and I, to steward the mission of the Bailey Home with great care, while ensuring at the same time the vision of Albany Helping Hands will stay the course, winning souls and transforming lives through the resurrection life of Jesus Christ! To you Father-God, be all the glory! Amen.
The Donors below helped make the Bailey Home a reality…
Albany Carpet One
Alpha Associates Services
AQB Premier Construction
Art Plus Signs
Brothers Concrete Cutting
Clean Cut Custom Concrete
Columbia Concrete Sawing
Dahled UP Construction
Dahled Up Painting
Dahled UP Roofing
Home Insulation Contractors
MJ Stanley Wood Crafting
Northern Willamette Valley Gutter
Robert L Tamayo Janitorial
Rodda Paint Company
Tim Riley Drywall
Toby Meekins Drafting & Design
University Fencing and Home