Light of Life Ministries, Inc.

Rating: 4.19 stars   16 reviews

Issues: Human Services

Location: 10 E North Avenue PO Box 6823 Pittsburgh PA 15212 USA

Mission: As a ministry of Jesus Christ, Light of Life will provide a home for the homeless and food for the hungry, and will build disciples for the Kingdom of God among the poor, addicted, abused and needy.
Target demographics: Men, women and children of all ages in the Pittsburgh area who are… Homeless Living in poverty Addicted Mentally challenged
Direct beneficiaries per year: ~1,000
Geographic areas served: Greater Pittsburgh
Programs: Light of Life provides comprehensive services to the poor and homeless which fall under two main areas: the Recovery Program and Samaritan Ministries.The Mission’s Recovery Program empowers men and women to achieve healthy, productive, self-sufficient living. Components of the program include: addiction recovery counseling, transitional housing, education and career training, life and parenting skills, treatment referrals for mental health issues, activities for improving socialization and relationship building, after-care and mentoring and other services. On-site care is also provided for children, including the services of a full time family therapist. Accommodations for men include a 38 man capacity site for residential care and an additional 12 man capacity for extended care at a nearby apartment facility. Hours of education, counseling, training and other services total >110,000 hours annually. Samaritan Ministries offer daily meals for the public at large, emergency shelter for men, daily chapel services, community outreach and a unique short-term case management program for homeless men called the High Commitment Shelter. This program serves close to 1,000 different individuals in a 12 month period. The Mission provides ~ 100,000 meals and 34,000 nights of safe shelter annually. 

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Community Reviews

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I began working at Light of Life three months ago, and ever since have been incredibly impressed with them as a non-profit organization. As a ministry focused on Jesus Christ, I see each staff member carrying out their tasks with excellence. I love hearing all of the success stories and how people's lives are truly changed after going through our programs. The leadership is phenomenal, and I could not be more pleased with working here. I love coming to work every day because of the amazing people I work with, and the knowledge that what I am doing is making a difference in the lives of so many people.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I started working with Light of Life about 3 months ago. Going to work each day is a huge blessing because of the great environment that surrounds this organizations. All staff members are here to work with the homeless and love them from the inside out. I have been honored to work in the meal ministry, donation center and sit and watch clients graduate from their programs. It has only been a couple months but I can tell this is a place for all people to come and learn how to serve God and others. No matter what your background is here you are going to fit in!

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

Light of Life is an amazing ministry in the Pittsburgh area. They do so much to change the lives of the homeless and suffering men, women and children in our community. Not only do they offer food, clothing and shelter, but also kindness, compassion and love which money cannot buy. I know that volunteering with Light of Life has changed my life for the better. I have learned so much from the clients and staff and am grateful to be a part of their work. I always leave with a smile on my face and in my heart!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

Light of Life is truly making a difference in the city of Pittsburgh! I have volunteered with the women and children's program, helped raise money for various events, and participated in holiday outreaches. Lives are forever being changed, not only to help overcome addictions, provide a hot meal and clean bed, or get people on their feet, but they truly demonstrate the love of God! It is incredible to be a part such a life changing organization.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

I have been on staff at Light of Life Rescue Mission for two and a half years at the time I am writing this. Prior to coming on staff, I was in youth ministry and our youth group did two service projects with the women and children's program. I have had an excellent experience with Light of Life. We are not a perfect organization, but we are committed to doing everything we can to become the best we are capable of becoming. I have seen the lives of the men, women, and children we serve get transformed. I have seen volunteers have their lives change as a result of volunteering here, and I have seen the lives of our staff members get changed as a result of working here. Being at Light of Life has taught me about homelessness, addiction, and mental illness. It has made me a better person. Regardless of how long my tenure at Light of Life ends up being, I will always look at the time I've spent here as some of the best years of my life!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I think we're making them. Our leadership team is committed to making this the best organization possible. I would not work here if I did not believe in the direction we are headed. Our best days as an organization are ahead!

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 4 stars  

Light of Life is a great nonprofit. I've volunteered with them on a number of occasions in the kitchen, and Hutch and Mike are great. The clients/ men I've worked with are great people to get to know, and although sometimes chaotic, the work is fun.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Some

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 1 stars  

I volunteered at Light of Life for years until my teen Daughters were sexual harassed by the front desk staff and the clients in the program. Sorry Tunch you will not get another nickle out of me for this organization

Would you volunteer for this group again?

No

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A little

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Okay

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

No

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 1 stars  

The Mission is a joke. The Staff are more worried about what they can steal The management works at another building and as no idea what is going on . I have been in the program have met with my case manager twice in 6 months. The staff borrows money from the clients and never pays them back also the clients are exploited by the fund raising department.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

None

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Unlikely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Somewhat badly

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 5 stars  

I know the 'former client' who posted such a negative review. I was there when he was. He always had an issue with authority, ANY house rules, and with anyone who tried to help him. I have been involved with Light of Life for a number of years. I know many of the former clients and graduates of the program because we run in the same circles-broken people that God has used Light of Life to help.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I know a bunch of guys who have gone through their program. I know a lot of them. They have hooked up with good habits, with God, and had their lives restored. I know a number of guys who were suicidal and got help by way of Light of Life staff and the connections with community services Light of Life has. I know a number of guys that have been reunited with family members after years of addiction kept them apart. These guys are now involved in their kids’ lives, reunited with parents, and ex-wives.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Update and expand their facility and their outreach programs.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

How did you learn about this organization?

I heard about it years ago- as a kid growing up in the 'Burgh. But got hooked up with them recently when I needed them.

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Rating: 1 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

This organization has its own ways of doing things and many of its policies impede rather than further the client's goals, such as obtaining employment or housing, if the client's needs and prefernces don't happen to match the organization's preconceptions. It does not seem to understand that access to a telephone during normal business hours (9AM to 5PM, Mon-Fri) and that access to a computer for extended periods of time (possibly even 24/7, which is feasible because the computer room is adjacent to the main desk) are highly desirable in
these activities. Many of the organization's policies can only be described as stupid and hypocritical, if not actually anti-Christian.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have personally observed 1 staff member and 2 affiliated clergy taking donated food products out of the building under circumstances which suggest that they were doing so for personal use (although possibly not). Staff members routinely eat lunches and sometimes other meals prepared from donated food items. I have not yet found out if these practices are acceptable or illegal under food bank regulations or if they are communicated to potential donors before contributions are accepted.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Investigate these possible thefts and, if they are confirmed as such, fire and prosecute those involved. Review all of the organization's policies and procedures and make major changes to bring them in line with the organization's Christian principles. Respect the privacy and dignity of all clients served by the organization and not tolerate staff behavior inconsistent with these ideals

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Some

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Unlikely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Badly

How did you find this group?

Referral by social worker at another facility.

What, if any, change in your life has this group encouraged?

Making sure that the situtaton that forced me to accept their services doesn't ever happen again. Reinforcement of my obligation to speak out and take action whenever I observe injustice, incompetence, or (especially) criminal behavior by those in positions of power and authority, especially when these are hypocritical (such as stealing by persons who profess to be Christians--"Thou shall not steal"). These are actually the outcomes of experiencing the organization's "bad" practicies (despite high ideals and good intentions), NOT from its own efforts to encourage positive changes.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

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Review from Guidestar