Cross in the City combines cutting edge urban outreach techniques with good old fashioned love. They're not just a great organization who make a powerful difference in the city, but they've got heart. They care for people on an individual level. Cross in the City enjoys a rich reputation among their peers as an organization that simply gets things done. And much of that is due to their powerhouse staff.
CITC has been a part of my life for several years. Helping with the school and "coaching" the students has been some of the most challenging and rewarding work I've ever done!
James loves these kids and gives them a safe place to rebuild their lives, get an education and begin to dream of a brighter future. We have seen several graduates do just that and its been worth every struggle to get them there.
We make do with a minimal amount of resources and yet what the kids need most is relationship.
A relationship (mentoring) with adults and also a positive one with their peers.
The building is old and needs lots of work- it's been interesting to see how the changes in the kids parallel the transformation that is taking place in the old building.
One Saturday our church volunteered to clean up, spruce up, and make the Cross in the City building a brighter and more inviting place for the volunteers and clients. Some of the young people who had been helped by Cross in the City also came. I got a special surprise when a former student of mine was there to help. I had this young man in my first year of teaching, but he moved away in the spring semester. I had his younger brother several years later, but all he would tell me was that is brother was ok.
What I had not known was that this young man was in a gang while in high school. He left town to live with a relative in order to get away from the gangs. A few years later, he returned home and found he had difficulties living in the same place where he had once been a gang member. I was thrilled to see him and meet his wife and two children.
We talked quite a bit that day about his life. I told him that I had been unaware that he was in a gang. That's when I found out that just how deep he had been into the gangs. He stunned me. He didn't go in details, but I realized that he was with some really bad people. He then went on to tell me how much Cross in the City had done for him.
Before me stood a man who was no longer in a gang. He had a job and a family. He told me that he owed so much to Cross in the City that he volunteered his time to help mentor young people who were trying to get out of gangs.
I consider all my students my "kids". I will be forever grateful to James Leslie and Cross in the City for providing for one of my "kids" when he needed help. I thank God each day for the lives this organization continues to touch and change.
This Organization is amazing! They do work all over Pasadena, helping youth stay away from and get out of things such as drugs, abuse, and alcohol. Cross In The City has helped hundreds of youth AND adults, and they will continue to do so. They are also running a private high school where they accept drop outs, or even those that never made it to high school. They incorporate Christian material into their teachings, and the changes that I have seen are absolutely spectacular. 5/5