HOPE Missions of the Upstate provides hope and healing to our community by meeting basic needs while looking for specific opportunities to improve individual circumstances. We seek to feed the hungry, provide clothing and shelter, empower, and equip by showing each the love of Christ. We are an approved 501(c)(3) Non-Profit charity.
At HOPE Missions, we strive to follow the teachings of God through His Word, the Bible. We seek to be Biblically guided in all we do and say. Below are two verses that guide us as we seek to provide HOPE to our community.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you HOPE and a future.”Jeremiah 29:11
It is so easy in life and in this fallen world to not truly believe that God has plans to prosper you and not harm you and give you hope and a good future. This is especially true when you find yourself in a hard place – whether that hard, difficult place is a result of your own choices or if it is a result of the choices of others. And at times, the hard and difficult time is a result of things out of our control. But no matter why you find yourself in a difficult place in life, it is easy to take your eyes off the promises of God – to prosper, to give hope, and to give a future.
When you try to do it alone, you will feel defeated because we can’t find this hope and a future on our own doings and our own work. We must have the power and love and salvation of Jesus Christ to be able to take hold of this prosperity, hope, and future that Jeremiah speaks of. As followers of Christ, we are commanded to walk alongside people to help show them the hope that Jesus Christ can give. HOPE Missions strives to help people in the Upstate community find and walk in this hope as they try to find a future through the difficult times they face in the present time.
You are my hiding place and my shield; I HOPE in Your word.Psalm 119:114
Life is hard!! We all find ourselves hiding in something – drugs, sex/relationships, work, our kids, a materialistic world, etc. when we face trials in this world. Those are the easy things to hide in, but they do not provide long-term hope. They may give us instant gratification and make our trials go away for a short time. But they can’t withstand the warfare that we face in this fallen world.
His Word is the hope that can withstand the trials and the warfare, and that will last forever. At HOPE Missions, we seek to come alongside friends who have hidden in some of the worldly gratifications and to share the hope of Jesus Christ through loving them like Jesus would and by planting seeds of His Word into their souls. It is these seeds that will take root when watered and bring hope.
At HOPE Missions, how do we share this hope when someone is at their lowest in addiction, homelessness, and extreme loneliness?
H: Hands of Jesus. We want to be the hands of Jesus. We don’t have to look far around us to see someone hurting – physically, emotionally, and/or spiritually. It is easier for us to say some Bible verses to them, thinking just that will give them hope.
But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.1 John 3:17-18
But John tells us in 1 John that it is in deeds we show God’s love. Our actions and the relationships we build will eventually give us permission because of the mutual respect that we build through our deeds of love to speak the truth and the hope that we find in His Word.
O: Opportunities. Provide individual opportunities for healing and personal advancement by having personal relationships to get to know each person as an equal child of God and share life together.
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.Isaiah 41:10
God will use us to help others heal and find opportunities for advancement.
Before we can expect others to seek opportunities for healing and personal advancement, they have to have their basic needs met and feel love and security – at HOPE Missions, we seek to help provide these basic needs so healing can begin.
P: Peace of Christ. Promote peace by pointing others to the peace that can be found in a personal relationship with Christ. Philippians 4:6-7 reminds us that we don’t need to worry about anything! That’s easy to say but much more difficult to put into action.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.Philippians 4:6-7
At HOPE Missions we seek to provide a peaceful environment where basic needs are met and also seek to model a personal relationship with Christ through our actions and our words.
E: Empower others to be the best version of the man/woman that God created them to be. Ephesians 2:10 reminds us that we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.Ephesians 2:10
At times it takes someone else pointing out our gifts and talents and the potential they see in us – we were ALL created as God’s masterpiece, each in our own individual way.
Sometimes we need encouragement to believe we are a masterpiece. At HOPE Missions, we want to be our friends’ biggest cheerleaders as they seek to be the masterpiece that God created them to be.
We serve those who are experiencing homelessness, living in deep poverty, addicts, the misfits, those with mental health issues and intellectual disabilities, in short, the outcasts.
We’ve been told to love our neighbor, but who is our neighbor? When Jesus was confronted with that question, he told a parable about a priest, a Levite, and a Samaritan. You probably know the story. Jesus simply concluded: “Go and do likewise.” So that’s what we do. We offer a safe place for folks to come and have coffee and breakfast. We do this with your support, both financially and physically.
We seek to fulfill our mission by providing breakfast Monday through Saturday as well as a Bible Study on Tuesday and Thursday. See Honey’s Place for more details.
Removing Barriers to Employment
For those we get to know better, we are able to provide copies of important documents, prescription meds, etc., by partnering with agencies across the county. Though limited, we do our best to connect them to housing and transportation options, including free bus tickets.
We’ve learned how to eliminate significant barriers to employment in three ways:
- We provide vouchers for free SC ID cards.
- We set up virtual visits with the Social Security Administration to order duplicate Social Security Cards.
- And most recently, we can send people to get a copy of their birth certificate using HOPE Missions letterhead and a check for $12.
These barriers are hurdles folks must summit in order to get a job.
Each Monday, we provide free clothing to our guests from a wide assortment of donated items. Our guests complete a clothing slip, and a volunteer goes to the back to find suitable items to fill their requests. We receive donations any day of the week and sort them with the help of extra volunteers on Thursdays.
Community Connections Resource Fairs
Every Third Thursday, we have a resource fair in our parking lot (or inside when the weather is bad). We typically have 10 to 16 service providers on site to provide direct services to our guests, hand out current information, meet and greet, etc. We’ve had everything from banks to job connections to addiction recovery programs represented at these events.
We team up with The LOT Project to distribute shoes, coats, etc., on each First Friday. We include a few supporting agencies like Asher House, Foothills Community Health Care, Anderson Free Clinic, and Alston Wilkes Society. It’s an all-hands-on-deck event that’s become very popular this year.
Honey’s Place — Daily Operations
We provide breakfast Monday – Saturday from 7:15-10:00 am except for the last Saturday of the month. We are open on all holidays (intentionally) to serve when most options are not available to our guests. Throughout the year, we provide additional meals related to special events and in cooperation with other partner agencies. We look for volunteer servants to support our daily operations. We have a handout that offers some details, but basically, if you have an hour or three early in the morning, you can make a huge impact on serving those in our community right here in Anderson. Some people serve on their way to work. Others stay the whole time. Whatever you can offer, we know you’ll be blessed as you bless others.
We distribute 100 Anderson City Transit bus tickets weekly to assist people in getting to jobs, appointments, shopping, etc.
There are three primary ways we address the need for housing: Housing Navigator, partnering with agencies providing shared housing, and Warming Center.
- Housing Navigator. Through a memorandum of agreement with Anderson Interfaith Ministries (AIM), we have a full-time Housing Navigator to assist people in finding an appropriate place to live. Beginning August 1, 2022, we began referring people to AIM’s Pivotal Support Orientation as an entry point to find attainable housing.
- Shared Housing. The best option for many of our guests for housing is to find a place that offers shared housing. We currently have three main providers for shared housing that includes men, women, and a few spaces for couples. Through these efforts, we’re able to offer safe and secure living environments for those who cannot afford a place of their own or for whom it would not be in their best interest (e.g., transitioning from an intense addiction recovery program).
- Warming Center. HOPE Missions is Anderson County’s Warming Center from November 1st through March 31st. During these potentially cold months, we provide a warm place for someone to spend the night when temperatures are forecasted to drop below 38 degrees. Anderson County has graciously provided the space, air mattresses, heating, bathrooms, etc., to accommodate as many as 40 people. The American Red Cross provided cots (most of which are still operable). We are building teams of two men and two women to stay overnight from 8 pm to 8 am. We continue to look for more teams! Please pass the word and consider volunteering to support our efforts.
There is much work to do! Please check out some ways to support this ministry by visiting Get Involved.