Harvesting Honey Teaching Tulsa’s Homeless Life Skills, Job Training
TULSA, Oklahoma - Tulsa's John 3:16 Mission is using bees to teach homeless people life skills and job training.
Bees swarmed the ceiling lights and the smell of honey filled the kitchen as some of Tulsa's homeless helped harvest honey.
"Today we are extracting honey from the beehives here at the refuge," said Trevor North.
The project is a part of BeeLoved, a program set up by Reverend Steve Whitaker.
"John 3:16 has launched a new for-profit company that exists to create job opportunities and job training for the homeless," Whitaker said.
The year-long program provides 100 beds to the homeless in our community.
Monday, 15 members of the program got their hands sticky, collecting a little bit of honey to sell.
"A lot of the people you see wandering around in the background, those are people that are on the program at John 3:16 Mission that, at one phase or another, are putting their homelessness behind them and are becoming part of our community again. That's the big home run hit," said Whitaker.
The John 3:16 Mission provides other working opportunities for members of the program. Job training and real-life experiences help get them back on their feet.
Whitaker said, "Sometimes people have adversity in their jobs. Being surrounded by thousands of bees is some adversity, let me tell ya. If you can work through that, you can get some good job skills."
"So far, it's really helped me as far as life skills,” North said. “John 3:16 has a lot of classes here. It's been just a great experience overall."
Members of the program wrapped up the harvest part of the project Monday afternoon. Tuesday, they’ll bottle it up and sell it to the public.
Proceeds will go to the John 3:16 Mission.