Though Tucson’s Gospel Rescue Mission has roots as a primarily men’s homeless shelter since 1953, the fastest-growing segments of the homeless population since the early 1990s are women and children. Responding to a dire need for expanded facilities, Gospel Rescue Mission purchased a 20-unit motel in 1991 known as Bethany House. But the demand far exceeded the facilities capabilities. In 2007 alone, Gospel Rescue Mission had to turn down 5,000 requests for shelter to women and children, simply because they didn’t have enough room. They believed this to be a calling from God to serve these people, and through a $1 million grant and another $1 million coming from donors like Chris’s Purpose, a new Women & Children’s Center opened in April 2011. The center provides an array of helpful programs from emergency shelter services, long-term recovery and restoration programs, a children’s program offering enrollment into public schools, tutoring, educational activities and Bible study as well as a vocational skills program covering a broad spectrum of career fields.
To become the most effective life changing ministry in Tucson that serves the homeless and needy by providing for their spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental wholeness through the power of Jesus Christ.
The ministry of the Gospel Rescue Mission is based upon the following values:
Meet Rachel Kibbey
Rachel has lost a lot of things in her life. Lost her dad in a car accident when she was three years old and custody of her son due to her drug addiction, but today Rachel can celebrate losing something. 92 pounds! Rachel has a new lease on life and her weight loss is only one indication of how far she has come in her recovery. Rachel now has a relationship with God where as she learned to believe in him and believe in herself.
Through the Genesis Program (our Recovery Program), Rachel was able to see what her false beliefs were. She used to believe the lies that brought her down, ones that told her she couldn’t do anything, but now she is learning to say, “I can!” She has learned to love herself and deal with life instead of depending on drugs to get her through.
Rachel grew up in Tucson and when she was 4 her mother moved in with an alcoholic who was verbally and emotionally abusive to her. At age five, she found comfort in food and struggled with a food addiction and depression most of her young life. At seven, she was in a car accident and in her 20’s was prescribed oxycodone for severe back pain resulting from that accident. By 2012, Rachel’s world was quickly spiraling out of control, addicted to crystal meth, had to give up custody of her son, lost her Section 8 Housing and her SUV and she began living in motels with her fiancé. For a period of time, they paid for their lifestyle by selling her prescriptions for oxycodone until her doctor fired her for refusing to take a drug test. After no longer having prescription drugs to support them, her fiancé began committing burglaries to support their addictions and hotel rooms.
On March 5th, 2012, her fiancé did not return to the motel room. He had been arrested and Rachel had nowhere to go. Rachel tried going home to her mother’s and continued knocking on her door until the cops came. “My mom called the cops. She wanted nothing to do with me. Crushed, I walked to the Gospel Rescue Mission. They had no beds, but I kept coming back for five days and on a Monday on March 12, 2012 there was a bed for me and that was my first day of being clean.” Rachel had never successfully completed a treatment program in the past. Originally she had walked in GRM’s doors just looking for shelter but experiencing the love and encouragement from the staff and other girls in the program helped her decide to go through the Genesis Program.
Rachel has completed the Genesis Program and is now living in the transitional house with her son, which she regained custody of. This last year has been the best year of her life. “At one time I had everything I ever wanted. Now I have nothing to call mine, but I am truly happy. It took me loosing everything to surrender to God! I didn’t realize he was all I ever needed until he was all I had.” While in prison, her fiancé has committed his life to Christ and when he is released they have plans to start their life together with God in the center and getting married before living together. Because of her changed life, she not only has custody of her son, but her mother is now her best friend and has a Godly future with her fiancé.
When asked what her world would be like if there was no GRM, Rachel replied, “I was hopeless, depressed, lonely, mad, scared, hurt and had no desire to go on with my life. I would have ended up in prison or killed myself. I would have had no chance to live. I mean really live!”