As we talk with members of the community about Omega Espresso Bar, our hearts are warmed by the enthusiasm we’re met with. It is so clear that there is a huge need for job training programs for women in need.
We recently met with Gloria Hall, Co-Director of the Women’s LifeChange Program at Portland Union Gospel Mission (UGM). We look forward to partnering with her and her team as we get closer to opening Omega Espresso Bar to help women transition from difficult situations to self-sustainability. Here’s what Gloria says about the need for our missional coffee shop and how she sees it benefiting the women she works with:
“After meeting with Susan and Janna I became very excited that we might be able to refer women who have gone through our program to their coffee shop. The women we work with often have drug or alcohol issues and 92% of the time have abuse or domestic violence issues. We have a one year program that provides counseling, case management and classes to address and conquer these issues, but many of our women do not have appropriate job skills or it has been a long time since they worked.
“This opportunity to be trained as a barista, or even a store manager, is exactly what they need. This will also give the women an opportunity to earn some money to begin paying off debt and save money for getting into an apartment. It is important that these women do not leave our program until they can enter safe housing and have the ability to support themselves and their children. I am looking forward to our graduates getting this great opportunity to be able to, not only learn how to make better choices and become clean and sober, but how to become a respected, self-sufficient member of society.”
Our prayer is that we will be able to serve the women of UGM, and others like them, by providing a safe environment and a strong support system that encourages long-term success in each of their lives.
Thanks for your continued prayers as we continue making new community connections and forming strategic partnerships with non-profit organizations looking to make a difference – one woman at a time.