I am a regular volunteer in the Next Step Ministry Thrift Store. All the proceeds help to support the battered women's shelter in our town. I retired almost 3 years ago from a very demanding job. I always felt that I have been so blessed in my life that I wanted to be able to give back to the community in some way. It all started with a simple gesture of donating an artificial Christmas tree to the shelter one year and a monetary donation. The tree was given to a theatre group that I support from a local store. A portion of the money was given to us by our church to "pass it forward". I believe were were lead to help this ministry. My husband and I were invited to a Next Step appreciation luncheon and we saw all the articles about battered women, statistics, etc. and our hearts were touched. The other people at the banquet supporting the ministry were very warm and passionate about their mission. I was hooked and started working in the thrift store. The proceeds from the store only provide a portion of the funding that is needed to help these women and their children regain their lives. The store itself is a place for people to be able to find great things at very low prices which is a blessing to many in need. I am proud to be a part of this organization and hope that it will be able to continue to give these women and their children their chance to start a new enriched life without the fear and terror that has been a part of their past.
I have worked along side the staff at Next Step Ministries as they cared for and supported the women at the shelter and out reach programs. I believe each person connected with Next Step is committed to making a difference in the life of each woman and child that comes through their door. I have seen women enter the Shelter feeling hopeless and leave with confidence and self esteem to make a new life possible for themselves and their children.