John 3:16 To Expand Services For Women
TULSA, Oklahoma - For the first time ever, the John 3:16 Mission will be offering homeless women a place to live.
John 3:16 has owned the old Choteau Elementary school for years.
Soon, it will be home to a residential faith-based recovery program, just for women.
Winter temperatures can be brutal, but the homeless face dangers during every season.
In September, police said a driver intentionally ran over four homeless people, killing a man and seriously hurting a woman.
Police also said a man raped and stabbed two homeless women last year.
"It's just been such a horrible year, such a rough year, for women on the streets," said Reverend Steve Whitaker with John 3:16.
So, for the first time since 1952, John 3:16 will offer women a place to stay full-time, in the halls of what used to be a Tulsa elementary school.
The Women’s Day Program has been around for years, offering Bible study and life skill classes, but women had nowhere to sleep at John 3:16.
Now, construction is underway to change that.
Each woman will have her own space with a bed, a desk, and a place to hang pictures on the wall, making the room personal.
"Women need a little bit more privacy, a little bit more personal space," said Director of Women’s Ministry Alyssa Boyd.
And plans for an even bigger project are underway.
Rev. Steve Whitaker said in a year or two, another building will sit next to the school.
That will house 30 women and the 12 rooms now under construction will then be used for men.
"Whatever their problem is that made them homeless, the goal of the program is to be able to help them to put that behind them and then move back into our community," Whitaker said.
The one-year program will offer counseling and job training.
The John 3:16 Mission hired four new employees Friday so they can start preparing for when the women move in, in about a month or two.