Recovery: Facing Anger at God

Posted by Barbara Comito, Marketing Director Jun 20, 2018 10:25:37 AM

“I was really angry with God and confused about…Well, if God really loves me, then how come I had to go through all this stuff? You know, there’s plenty of people out there that didn’t have to grow up the way I did or see the things I saw or get exposed to the things I was exposed to…And so, why me?”

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Justin Norwood was born in Chicago to an alcoholic and a drug addict. His parents split up when he was five. When he was seven, he had to choose whether to move to Washington with his dad or stay with his mom. He went with his dad. They were homeless for two years.

“We bounced around, lived in his van a little bit here and there. My dad has a lot of family in the Tri-Cities, but they didn’t really want us staying with them for too long because my dad’s an addict and I had a lot of anger issues.”

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Youth and the Future of Ministry

Posted by Union Gospel Mission May 31, 2018 12:53:05 PM

By Ryan Brown, UGM Youth Outreach Director

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Three and a half years ago, I was called back to a place where God transformed my life: Spokane’s Union Gospel Mission.

I had no idea the blessing that would come would be so substantial and life-changing for this community, and me personally.

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The UGM Residents You Didn't Know About

Posted by Lynn Yount, Staff Writer May 23, 2018 11:22:10 AM

For years, the reader board at the UGM Crisis Shelter for Women and Children on East Sprague read, “Hope starts here.”

The Crisis Shelter has a bigger, more suitable facility now. But hope is still budding at that old motel building.

It is now the UGM Student Impact Center, a fusion of residential and community space where college students live and reach young people at risk in Spokane. Those 12-15 resident interns” serve at least 8-10 hours a week on top of their full class schedules. 

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What the Kids in Juvenile Detention Want to Know

Posted by Union Gospel Mission May 10, 2018 1:53:31 PM

Christa serves in the Juvenile Detention ministry for UGM Youth Outreach. Here, she reflects on her experiences with these young people.

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UGM Camp: Much More than Fun and Games

Posted by Lynn Yount, Staff Writer May 16, 2017 1:13:56 PM

Heidi Hash had the chance to give a priceless gift. It wouldn’t cost her money, but it would require a huge investment of time, energy – and faith.

The youth pastor at her church, South Hill Bible Church, was invited to bring a group of kids to UGM Camp for a week, and he was wondering where they should look to find the children who needed it most.

“Grant!” she said immediately. She had two children at Grant Elementary School and knew it held hundreds for whom this would be the only way they’d ever get to go to camp. The school’s rate of children qualifying for lunch assistance from the government is 83%, reflecting the relative poverty in the neighborhood. These parents can’t afford to pay for “luxuries” like summer camp.

The Grant principal welcomed the idea. She asked what kinds of children they wanted to recruit.

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The Young and the Homeless: Fighting Poverty at its Roots

Posted by Lynn Yount, Staff Writer May 9, 2017 1:10:50 PM

The numbers are hard to nail down, but they’re sobering any way you look at them. These are the best estimates we could formulate from the numbers we found.

  • There are 1.6 million homeless children and teens in the United States.
  • 80,000 of them are unaccompanied by parents.
  • At least 50% of homeless teens have experienced abuse. Many are homeless because they ran away from abusive households.
  • 70% of homeless teens use drugs and/or alcohol to medicate the pain of their situation.
  • Close to home: There are 3,000 homeless children in grades K-12 in Spokane County alone.

We have to do something.

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Camp Reflection: Kids Like Us

Posted by ugminlandnorthwest Sep 2, 2016 4:57:28 PM

UGM Camp is over for the summer, but it's worth ruminating on those marvelous eight weeks a little longer. (Unfortunately, the last week of camp was cancelled due to wild fires in the area.)

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Spokane Barista Academy

Posted by Merrily Brast, Staff Writer May 10, 2016 5:13:26 PM

Turns out, coffee may just empower youth to avoid the cycle of poverty, homelessness, and addiction.

UGM is teaming up with Project Hope and Indaba Coffee to train youth in job readiness – educating them in building a resume, how to get and keep a job, and coffee making skills – an effort called the Spokane Barista Academy.

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31 Years and Counting: Helping At-risk Youth

Posted by ugminlandnorthwest Jun 24, 2015 4:01:00 PM

After 31 years of volunteering for UGM at Juvenile Detention, Jerry McGlade still has a heart for helping at-risk youth. He also has a passion for sharing the gospel and spreading the love of Jesus with those who may never have experienced love. Here's what Jerry has to say about life, at-risk youth, and volunteering.

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Introducing at-risk kids to awe, trust-building and unconditional love

Posted by Barbara Comito, Marketing Director May 20, 2014 3:40:00 PM

Dennis Roach: 40 years of working with young people

Youth Outreach Director Dennis Roach is retiring at the end of June after 13 years with the Union Gospel Mission. Before coming to UGM, Denny spent 25 years as a social worker in the Juvenile Justice System. Denny has dedicated his professional life to impacting the lives of at-risk kids. He has collaborated with churches, youth pastors and schools to reach children in poverty and broken homes. For literally thousands of children, Denny has been the conduit by which they have been introduced to the great outdoors, risk-taking, trust-building and, most significantly, the unconditional love of Jesus Christ.

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