Tag: ministry

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SMM Intern-2

Sox Place is seeking a Social Media Marketing intern who has a heart for the runaways, gutter punks, train hoppers, and street youth that find themselves without shelter in Denver Colorado on a regular basis. Without a desire to show love and grace to people who desperately need it, there is no reason to apply for the Social Media Marketing internship.

Beyond a heart for the street youth and a talent for writing, the ideal candidate has a creative spirit and is missons minded.  We’re looking for someone who desires to learn and practice professional social media skills and is thoughtful when interacting with online communities and building relationships. You’ll be tasked with monitoring our various social media platforms, and using a variety of social media tools.

You must be up for various tasks including, but not limited to:

  • Monitoring social media accounts for engagement opportunities
  • Creating graphics and content calendars for social media accounts
  • Conducting research to assist team with new content marketing and campaign opportunities
  • Assisting with research and writing projects as assigned
  • Working two days minimum per week

Desired Skills and Experience:

  • Interest in marketing, communications, journalism, advertising or public relations
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Knowledge of social media management tools
  • Basic knowledge of WordrPress

Not Mandatory but a benefit to have:

  • Basic Photography Skills
  • Basic Video Edititng Skills
  • Journalism Background

This is an unpaid internship and would be a great opportunity to earn college credit.
Email resume and cover letter to kealareeverts@gmail.com with Social Media Internship in the subject line

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every day

 

Being homeless is not about being lazy or relying on “the system.” Being homeless is not about being scummy, smelly, or dirty.  Being homeless is more than just being without a house, because a home is more than a roof over your head. Being homeless is about survival.  It prevents 1.7 million young people in the United States from dreaming, experiencing safety and love on a daily basis.

Often I sit down with Doyle in the morning at Sox Place discussing some of the kids that frequently attend, ideas about getting their stories out and God’s role in this ministry.  When he recalls specific kids and their stories I can see the tapes rolling in his head as he visualizes past encounters.  This time he’s referring to a time when his son Jordan was in grade school.

“The first homeless girl I knew was from Cedar Hill, Texas and went to second grade with Jordan,” Doyle said,  “she would hide under the family car from her abusive dad.”

This is where Merriam Webster’s dictionary definition of a home as “One’s residence” doesn’t quite capture what a home really is.  If home is just a residence, then being homelessness means being only without a residence, and after working with young adults for fourteen years, Doyle sees home, and homelessness as so much more than a dictionary definition.

“A home should be a residence where there is love, provision, protection, boundaries, correction and safety. There are many more homeless youth and young adults than just the ones who are recognized by our government and statistics in the physical sense.”

Ultimately being homeless is about you and me.  It’s our community and those on the streets are our neighbors. So what does it take for you and me to step up and move to make a difference in our communities?

For me it was a one time missions trip to Denver’s Sox Place with a youth group I was involved with a few years back. It set a fire in my soul to make a difference for these kids.

Maybe you don’t know where to start, I urge you to make a trip down here!  See and experience first hand what we do. Ask where you can help. This might be financially, physically, or spiritually.  We are always praying for financial gifts to help keep our heat on and doors open.  When groups or individuals pay us a visit and serve a meal, or donate socks, it means so much to us! Most of all we need to be on your prayer lists. Pray for us, but more importantly pray for our kids. Pray for their survival, pray that they might find freedom, refuge and peace.


Keala

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Sox Place-2

As the days grow shorter and my last semester as a student at the local University draws near I find myself meditating on a question I have thought about most of my life. “What is my purpose?”  “Where will I find my place?”  I’ve been working towards the end of my college career for five years now and as much as I am excited, I am also scared. But I urge to know where can I be used to make a difference?

At a very young age I felt an urgency to make a difference in the lives of those around me for the better. I shuttered at the thought of anyone having to suffer and it broke my heart when I learned one of life’s lessons; that I can’t save everyone (or anyone for that matter) from the wrench getting thrown into the “well oiled machine” called life.

That’s when my eyes were opened to the difference between life saving and life serving. It’s easy to want to save others, especially when we are surrounded by so much hurt and tragedy. The kids at Sox Place are hurting and I want to save them from the elements outside, from the strangers on the street, from their abusive homes and families they fled from so long ago (or not so long ago).  But that’s way above my pay grade.

Does this mean that we sit by and do nothing?  Although no one can save anyone, it doesn’t mean that we can’t serve others.  When we serve our communities and give to those in our neighborhoods we are making lasting changes in lives of people that we may never know. This isn’t about saving others, it’s about serving others. Sometimes we are just a stepping stone in someone else’s life, moving them a little bit closer to a place where they are free to dream and hope for the future.

This December 8th is Colorado Gives Day.  Come along side us this time of year and make a difference in the lives of those kids that want to hope, but may be too worried about where they are sleeping that night to dream of a better life. Partner with Sox Place and become that stepping stone in these kids’ lives. We have walked along side these kids on a daily basis for thirteen years investing in the lives of the outcasts, and the overlooked, the lost and the broken. We invite you to walk with us by donating to Sox Place. Join the movement and give where you live this Colorado Gives Day.

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I’ll admit when I first met Milenia and Face I wasn’t sure how they were going to feel about me, but almost right off the bat I knew how I felt about them.  They certainly aren’t your average couple, but instead dynamic, interesting and I can honestly say I’ve never met anyone like them. It’s more than just the tattoos that each tell a story, and it’s more than the fact that they were once train riders themselves.  It has more to do with the degree to which they serve those around them.

On day one that I began as a volunteer, Milenia showed me around the place, instructing me on how things worked. What they hygiene room was, and how many shirts people were allowed to take from the closet. All the while she was helping in the kitchen, being asked to check the email, and planning to somehow sit down and write thank you cards to some of our supporters.  She never once showed an ounce of stress. She reminded me of a saying my mom used to use, “dynamite comes in small packages.”  She couldn’t have been taller than 5’4” but that never stopped the way she gracefully managed what seemed to be utter chaos around her. It was an absolute pleasure to work along side you Milenia, to see what the meaning of hard work and compassion is. I admire how the kids at Sox Place always flocked to you, to boast of their success or vent in times of hurt.  I strive to be a woman in my community, where people feel they can always come to me for celebration or advice, and know that I am there for them, much like how you were always there for the kids here at Sox Place.

“Face, what an interesting name,” I thought to myself when I first stepped into Sox Place. Maybe I heard them wrong when they introduced me to him.  Sure enough that was his name.  Face is the type of person that just gets more rewarding to know as time goes on. He’s the quiet type when you first meet him, but as time went on I felt like I got a little bit closer to discovering more about his personality, funny, joyful, and full of life.  However what was evident from beginning to end is that Face is one of the hardest working people I know.  He never let me fill up the water jugs, he never let me take out trash, and he was always available when we had a donation drop off that needed to be moved inside.  When you need help, Face is the kind of guy that will absolutely be by your side. While he worked at Sox Place, he also sometimes spent his mornings working construction across the street. I remember one of the first days I worked with him, he had been working construction all morning, and then helped around Sox Place for a while. Later that afternoon I found him sleeping on one of the dog beds underneath the foosball table.  I thought to myself, if everyone worked hard enough to find a dog bed a place of solitude, we might live in a very different society.  More than hardworking, Face has a huge heart. As the days began to grow colder he would ask if we could open a little early so that the babies outside could get warm.  On Face and Milenias last weekend at Sox Place, I got a picture sent to me telling me a story about how Face gave this little guy his skateboard because his old one was sold by his Dad in order to pay for rent. It was those “little” acts of kindness that Face performed on the daily that really made me understand the kind of person he was.

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I only worked with Face and Milenia and Jeebus for five months, and I hope that someday again I will get a chance to see them, and meet their little boy that’s due this spring. Thanks for being such a blessing in my life and making such an impact here at Sox Place. I already miss you guys so much but I know that your new adventure of starting a family will be a wonderful time in your life!

– Keala

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cigarette break

I met “Clutch” the beginning of October when the air was still warm and many travelers were making plans to get out of Denver before the air turned brisk and cold, much like how it is this morning as I write this post.  He came off as tough, a little on edge, due to how the day was pan  ning out, but incredibly intelligent and driven.  He approached me when he noticed my camera sitting in my lap. We got to talking and he asked if I would take his photo so that he could send it to his family, and let them know he was okay. Of course I jumped at the chance and I began to ask him about his life story.

“I was born in South Carolina and then we moved to Rochester NY near Syracuse, and I lived there until I was 10 years old. But then my Grandfather passed away and we moved down to Florida: my Mom, Dad, two sisters and brother. I lived down there pretty much ever since 1998. My golden years were spent down there. Elementary school, Middle school, High school, well for the time that I was in High School,” he said.
Clutch eventually enrolled in online school and graduated early with a 4.0. Although society typically applauds students who can accomplish school early by labeling them “driven” and bound for success, Clutch believes that due to his early success, he found himself in more trouble.

“I wasn’t really too thrilled with school so I homeschooled myself and finished early. It’s both a curse and a blessing at the same time. I got done with school but I had so much time on my hands, I ended up just ripping and running the streets without any care. I’m kinda doing the same thing now, I’m just a little bit smarter,” he said with a laugh.

Having that much free time, he quickly found himself leading a life that eventually lead right to prison.

“I was put in a juvenile program when I was 17 and then got out a couple years after. But when I was 19 I went to prison for aggravated battery with a weapon for bodily harm and a strong arm robbery. I got set up basically” he said. “I was selling drugs, and there was a dude who wasn’t happy with my services. So he made up a bunch of lies to his wife’s brother who was a sheriff and he got me roped off. I was stupid, young and naive and I spoke too much when the police came to question me about it, I sealed my own fate. I was young and stupid. I’ll be 26 this month, so I’ve done a lot of growing up.”

Although he’s spent a good portion of his young adult life in the prison system, Clutch claims he tried to make the best of his time.

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“I got my degree while I was in prison. I went to prison pretty young, I was 19 years old and got out when I was 23, and I tried to make the best of my time. People would get involved in politics and the negatives of prison. I just wanted to work in the kitchen, workout, eat and go to school. I made the best of it.  Unfortunately studying horticulture turned out not to be really a lucrative career choice but it made me knowledgable, I’m sure I can use it in a couple different fields of work. Plus I can not just grow my food, but I can tend to livestock too.  I can basically generate my own homestead if I wanted to. Plus since I lived in Florida I’ve had a lot of landscaping experience, so I can do all sorts of tree work and construction.  I could pretty much build a house from the ground up.”

Although Clutch has had no serious felony trouble since 2010, when I had spoken with him he had just gotten out of jail after spending a month in Salida for driving on a revoked license and not going to court for the ticket, so his next step is to get back home to Florida.

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“My whole family is out there…I’ll probably catch a train out of here with some friends or maybe by myself. I’m headed back that direction because that’s where I want to be. Well it’s not really where I want to be, but that’s where I need to be. Get my life back on track ya know, so I can come back out here. I originally came out to Colorado because I was cultivating marijuana and it was really cool and very profitable, kinda thought I’d be able to do it again when I came back out and it just backfired on me. I’m really starting from nothing right now,” he said.

Sox Place is a place where street kids, travelers and gutter punks can be “okay.” It’s a place where they can gather themselves after time in prison or even just a tough day out on the streets, and re-plan their strategy for life.  Many times I have seen kids walk in knowing almost no one and be embraced by the community here as one of their own with little to no judgment. I haven’t seen Clutch since that warm October day, so I’m hoping he made it to Florida and has been reunited with his family.

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