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(ABOVE: Pictured is a warm and welcoming environment for those seeking refuge with Shadow Home.)
(Taylorville)- Many people pass by Shadow Home daily and have yet to learn the gem Christian County holds. Right off the square is where people can find support for many things. No matter what you are going through, Shadow Home is there for those willing to work to make a positive change in their life or the community around them. The home is a residential faith-based program for women and children. Shadow home provides lodging, meals, clothing, laundry, and the tools to develop a successful relationship with God and others.
“Shadow Homes’ mission is to provide shelter for homeless, abandoned, or abused women and their children. The group wants to allow them to break the cycles of hopelessness and dependencies through spiritually based teaching and care. To provide an effective and permanent change in their lives and lead to the development of positive character and life skills.” – Vickie Jackson.
The concept was brought about in 2001. Brenda Branch worked at a local church and noticed the need for a life-changing program like Shadow Home. Shadow Home is not an emergency shelter. Shadow Home is a program that helps families develop the skills they need to succeed in today’s world. Shadow Home allows individuals to create deeper connections with the community around them. The Christian County community came together to provide for this project, with; Contractors; furniture businesses; electricians; many others pulling together to donate goods and services that allowed this project to fall into place.
The group has been blessed over the years by different groups looking to make a change in local communities. One way volunteer groups have impacted Shadow Homes is by helping with donations or putting in the work to help keep the group moving forward. Many groups over the years have dedicated time to the home by helping care for children, the house, or the women who find services there. Over the years, I have known those who have been able to find help getting a Job because the home was able to find help with grooming services such as proper clothing and haircuts for a fresh look. These small actions can help those looking for better job placement stand out, and the home is always willing to help with such needs.
I passed by Shadow Home for the first time in 2013. After living in various shelters over the years, I knew the look and feel of one when I saw it. After my experiences, I knew that Shadow Home felt like one of the ideal homes. I felt drawn to the place and wanted to learn more about it. After the birth of my daughter, I wanted something to keep me busy while building stronger community connections, so I applied for a volunteer position with Shadow Home. From the moment I walked in the door, there was a feeling of home and a sense that I was where I belonged. While working with the group, I learned many new life skills and developed a more profound understanding of myself. Shadow Home made me feel included and provided for. I felt a sense of peace knowing that I had a strong team of people behind me to support my goals in life. I came from a life filled with drug addiction and depraved behavior. Shadow Home showed me that there was still an alternative way of living. Instead of following what the world said I should have and what I should be, Shadow home helped me find my identity in Christ.
If someone needs help, Shadow Home is accustomed to helping passersby with how they can find that support. Shadow Home can provide them with available goods, counseling, finding resources, and housing.
The community can help the efforts of Shadow Home by donating household goods, canned food, gift cards, laundry detergent, and personal care items. Things that make one feel, smell, and dress their best are welcomed donations for Shadow Home. Many people who reach out to Shadow Home for help have lost everything. Providing for those looking for material help can significantly help the community. During my time in shelters, I found many people who had the skills on paper to acquire a good job. However, the individual needed the means to find the appropriate attire for the interview process. Shadow Home has helped many like myself find the confidence to go out for better opportunities in life.
Shadow Home wants the community to know that the program is not meant to be a quick fix or an emergency shelter. Shadow Home is looking to help Mothers learn how to operate in the world, apart from the lifestyle they have grown to know. The goal of shadow home is to teach everyone this one principle provided by Mark 5: 19
“Go home to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you and how He has had compassion on you.”
Many have asked me, “What is it like at Shadow Home? My response is, “Shadow home is like home; walking into grandma’s house and knowing you will get good advice that will lead you in the right direction. It feels like a place where you know you will get support in making positive changes.” That is always what I have found within Shadow home.
For more information on SHADOW Home, visit shadowhome.org or find them on the Facebook page titled Shadow Home.
(ABOVE: Volunteers are pictured getting ready to clean and organize the playroom for the children.)
(ABOVE: The playroom is reorganized and ready for children to spend many rainy days playing in this warm sanctuary.)