Since 1971 the people at Hope for the Inner City have walked alongside chronically poor residents of Chattanooga like John, Brenda and Tami. We’ve lent them a listening ear and a helping hand. We’ve furnished food, dental care, prescriptions and after-school tutoring. We’ve helped them balance a checkbook and learn to read. We’ve helped some find temporary housing. We’ve helped others find permanent homes and good jobs, and we’ve taught them the skills to retain both.
Tate, an ex-offender, now works two jobs. Jessica, a longtime public housing tenant, now owns a home. Anthony, a major drug dealer, renewed his marriage vows and rededicated his life to Christ.
In all this, we’ve learned that inside every poor person are untapped talents covered by layers of neglect, abuse, illness and oppression. But with the same patience and compassion that Jesus showed us, the people of God can walk alongside the poor, meeting their immediate needs while also uncovering their hidden talents. We have seen the poor move from dependency to self-sufficiency, from crisis to hope.