Staff Report

Combining the spirit of Christmas with the independence of July 4, the Miami Rescue Mission and Broward Outreach Centers helped those who are homeless and in need in South Florida celebrate at the organization’s annual Christmas in July Street Outreaches on all three of their campuses. The organization celebrates Christmas in July to combine the spirit of Christmas with the hope of independence and empowerment for those who are in need or on the streets.

Sponsored by Jack Link’s, PriceSmart and Scott Evans Productions with nearly 500 volunteers, the event included serving over 3500 meals, the distribution of thousands of pieces of clothing, as well as Mission Hope bags filled with hygiene necessities. Over 600 children in need were given brand new gift-wrapped sneakers donated by many supporters. Also the children received new backpacks with supplies.

“The Miami outreach was amazing” said a guest, who was eating with her children. “The children had a whole experience with a magic show, balloon art and face painting, plus amazing bounce houses and an art corner. My children are going to receive new sneakers and backpacks; they cannot wait to receive these great presents.”

Each campus held its own career fair and many service agencies were present to provide information about jobs and community resources. Representatives spoke with individuals and made appointments for possible future jobs as well as offering other forms of help. Agencies such as: Volunteers of America, Housing Opportunities Project for Excellence, Inc., Career Source of South Florida, Legal Services of Greater Miami, Transition, Inc, Safe-Link, Goodwill Industries, Justice in Motion, Miami VA Healthcare System and Veterans Administration were there to offer additional information to those in need.

At the Hollywood campus, special guest, Vice Mayor Peter D. Hernandez of District 2 delivered a powerful keynote speech. Pastor Danny Prada from HeartWay Church led the crowd in prayer, Pastor Samantha Williams entertained us with beautiful songs accompanied by her son Antonio Williams on piano were also welcomed as special guests. Song and dance were provided by Tamaka Duncan from Souls Harvest Creative Ministries as well as entertainment from Scott Evans Productions.

In Pompano Beach, they guests were so happy with the BBQ lunch, haircuts and clothing give-away. The new sneakers for the children were the biggest hit. All 3 campuses together estimated they gave over 600 new sneakers to at-risk children, just in time to go back to school.

Miami Rescue Mission/Broward Out- reach Centers President, Ronald Brummitt, said of the event, “Those who are in homeless situations living on the streets and those living in our program need to know that people still care. There is hope for them and hope for a brighter future of independence and empowerment.”

He added, “The career fair is a great way for people in the outside community to reach those who are in need. Many also decide to come off the streets and into one of our life-changing programs. Today 155 homeless signed up to come into one of our life-changing programs. Children are so excited with their new shoes….it truly is Christmas in July and just in time before school starts. We are grateful for our supporters and pray that this is a win-win for everybody that has helped and for those who are being helped.”