East Hawaii News

Salvation Army Launches ‘Pathway of Hope’

April 17, 2015, 9:50 AM HST
* Updated April 17, 10:25 AM
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A new statewide initiative, “Pathway of Hope,” has been launched by the Salvation Army Hawaiian and Pacific Island Division.

The new initiative is aimed at breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty, homelessness, and drug addiction for both individuals and families.

“We aim to bring lasting changes to participant’s lives by focusing on three pillars of change: jobs; housing; and a new community of support and accountability,” said Major John Chamness, Divisional Leader of The Salvation Army Hawaiian & Pacific Islands Division. “Research indicates that an addicted or homeless person’s ability to make lasting changes in their lives is greatly enhanced by providing services that focus on removing barriers for these three pillars.

“Our experience shows us that families and individuals often face a repeating cycle of recidivism – where they move from crisis to crisis and remain vulnerable. By successfully offering a targeted set of services, rooted in strengths-based case management, we will help more families and individuals truly break the cycle of crisis and achieve stability.”

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Clients of the “Pathway of Hope” initiative will be supported by a professional team of case managers who have varied backgrounds and areas of expertise. These case managers will work as life coaches to assist clients in identifying and finding solutions to the barrier that gets in the way. Some of these barriers include: lack of job experience, bad employment history, legal issues, lack of housing, unhealthy friends, financial problems, mental health issues, and feeling hopeless. The hope is that through the process, clients will find jobs, pay rent, and find support and accountability.

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“I’m reminded of the old Chinese proverb, ‘Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.’ Pathway of Hope is designed to partner with and work alongside clients, not to do the work for them. The goal is to help the individual get to a place of independence and sufficiency for a lifetime,” said Major Chamness.

Individuals who are existing clients are being offered the service initially. These people are selected as they are transitioning from The Salvation Army’s addiction programs. According to program officials, the goal is to have 50 families and individuals participating in the initiative within the first year.

“Pathway for Hope” works together with other Salvation Army programs.

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“We also know, The Salvation Army can’t do this alone. We need help from business owners to provide jobs, from property managers, landlords, and developers to provide housing and support from communities, businesses, and individuals throughout Hawai’i,” Major Chamness said. “Our staff and Board of Advisors have been working on this program for two years and donors have stepped up and invested $200,000 to get the program to this initial stage. Ideally, we will need another $300,000 to operate it for the remainder of 2015. Our goal is to raise $1 million each year to sustain the program. It is a staff-intensive, holistic approach initiative, one where donations are raised to build human capital rather than building capital.”

Those interested in supporting the program can contact The Salvation Army Hawaiian and Pacific Island Division by calling (808) 988-2135 or by visiting the Hawai’i Salvation Army website.

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