Rescue Mission showcases services, successes at today's open house


If anyone exemplifies what officials with the Rescue Mission of the Mahoning Valley say are primary goals for clients, it likely would be Randy and Jessica Skelton.

“This place helped facilitate amazing changes in our lives,” said Jessica, who came to the mission with her husband of seven years last summer from Cleveland, Tenn., is in a 12-step recovery program and is studying to be a state-tested nurse’s aide.

In addition, Jessica and Randy will be graduating in early March from the mission’s discipleship programs, she said.

The couple spoke of their efforts to make changes in their lives, as well as their successes, during a two-hour open house Thursday afternoon at the facility, 962 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., downtown.

The gathering, called “One Twenty-Five,” was to celebrate the mission’s 125th anniversary and to showcase its services, ministerial and other programs and community collaborations.

Conducting part of an extensive tour through the Mahoning Valley’s sole emergency shelter was Ron Starcher, human-resources associate, who explained that between about 1930 and 1971, the building had been a segregated YMCA for blacks.

Starcher also outlined several rules for and expectations of clients, saying those who stay for an extended time are required to look for employment and participate in offerings including a nine-month discipleship program for men and a comparable one for women.

Resd more about the facility in Friday's Vindicator or on

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