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Average number of children sheltered overnight at Rescue Mission of Mahoning Valley has tripled since move to new shelter location.

The Rescue Mission of the Mahoning Valley has been in existence since 1893 and serves men,
women and children who are experiencing homelessness by providing emergency overnight
shelter. Additionally, because of the Lord’s faithfulness poured out through the community’s
generosity, the Mission shares three full meals daily to anyone in need and offers many tracks
and resources helping our guests grow out of homelessness.

In 1982, the Mission addressed a need in The Valley when the Women and Families
Department was added to the ministry. Back then, overnight stays for women and children who
were experiencing homelessness averaged ten to twelve people nightly.

On the night of March 8, 2022, there were a total of forty-four children housed at the new
Rescue Mission of Mahoning Valley building. Total capacity for the women and family’s
department is eighty-eight beds and the department had a total of seventy-seven people in the
shelter that evening. It was the first time in the history of the Mission, that there were more
children than adults in the Women and Family’s department for an overnight.
Since March 8th, the number of children in the house has been in flux, dipping at the lowest point
to 27 children overnight ranging in age from just a few months old to age 16.
Since the relocation to the Rescue Mission of the Mahoning Valley’s new 50,000 square foot
shelter located at 1300 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, the number of children experiencing
homelessness has been significantly higher compared to the overnight child census the Mission
experienced at the previous location. For comparison, October 15, 2021, there were nine
children staying at the shelter, November 1, 2021, there were six and just before our move on
November 15, 2021, to the new facility, there were seven children staying overnight.

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19, the disease
caused by the SARS-CoV-2, a pandemic. Some of these lower overnight stay numbers in 2021
could be attributed to COVID-19 social distancing requirements that reduced the overnight
capacity in the Women and Family’s Department to only thirty people from sixty individuals.
In March of 2020 the total number of child overnights went from three-hundred and five to only
ninety-six the following month (April 2020). Lynn Wyant, the Rescue Mission of the Mahoning
Valley’s Chief Development Officer explained that child overnights are easily calculated “We
count each bed assigned to a child from birth to 18 years of age each night. So, if there are ten
children on Monday, that would be ten overnights. If there are the same ten children at the
Mission on Tuesday, that would be an additional ten overnights. Those ten children would
comprise twenty overnights in our statistics. It’s a total number of times that a bed is slept in, not
a unique people count.”

Prior to the pandemic, the average number of children sheltered overnight was four-hundred and
sixty-two in 2018, and four-hundred and fifty-four in 2019. Still far less than the overnight
average numbers the Mission is seeing currently in March of 2022 when the average year-to-date sits at six-hundred and eighty total child overnights at the Rescue Mission of the Mahoning

When asked about the increase in services for children, John Muckridge III said “Children are a
gift from God. The fact that the community can care for these kids with their financial gifts to the
Mission means that more lives are being reached with the Gospel, and they are safe and well-fed. It also brings challenges to our staff with more meals to prepare, more laundry and bedding
to wash and in general more activity in the building. But we wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m
so grateful to the community for sustaining the ministry and to the Lord for allowing us to care for
these precious kids until they can move on with their families to more permanent housing.”

For more information about how you can partner with the Mission and provide for men, women
and children who are experiencing hunger and homelessness, please call our Chief Development Officer, Lynn Wyant, at 330-744-5485 or email 2ndchance@rescuemissionmv.org.

Supporting Statistics:

Child Overnight Statistics from Rescue Mission of Mahoning Valley

  • Monthly Average 2018 – 462 child overnights
  • Monthly Average 2019 – 454 child overnights
  • Monthly Average 2020 – 225 child overnights
  • Monthly Average 2021 – 206 child overnights
  • Monthly Average 2022 to date – 680 child overnights

Total Number of Unique Children sheltered a minimum of one night

  • 2018 – 181 unique children (14.4% of annual Mission unique guest count)
  • 2019 – 146 unique children (13.8% of annual Mission unique guest count)
  • 2020 – 90 unique children (12.3% of annual Mission unique guest count)
  • 2021 – 89 unique children (12.4% of annual Mission unique guests count)
  • 2022 to date – 68 unique children (17.8% of annual Mission unique guest count)

March 2022 statistics

  • Highest Total Unique Children Overnight – 44 children sheltered on March 9, 2022
  • Total number of Unique Children provided overnights in March 2022 – 46

For additional information and comments, please contact, John Muckridge III, Rescue Mission of

Mahoning Valley President/CEO at 330-744-5485.

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