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“We want to serve the homeless community the best way we can,” Las Cruces Gospel Rescue Mission (GRM) Executive Director Henry Young said May 11, as GRM broke ground on its new facility, “Bethesda – House of Mercy and Grace,” at 1050 W. Amador Ave., next door to GRM.
Young said the first of two buildings that are part of the expansion was delivered May 10 and will provide housing for homeless people who choose not to stay in the mission and will serve three hot meals a day.
The buildings, House of Mercy No. 1 and No. 2, will also provide additional food storage for GRM’s food pantry program, through which it supplies food to church-based food pantries in Las Cruces and Doña Ana County. There also will be space for mentoring/counseling, childcare and volunteers, GRM said.
The project will include a renovation of GRM’s kitchen, dining and laundry facilities.
Young said GRM must raise several hundred thousand dollars to pay for the project, as costs have risen substantially since it began a year and a half ago.
“I’ll take money from everyone,” Young said, adding that he would welcome donations of any amount.
Las Cruces Mayor Pro Tempore Kasandra Gandara also spoke at the groundbreaking, as did Mesilla Valley Community of Hope Executive Director Nicole Martinez and state Sen. Carrie Hamblen, D-Doña Ana, who is president and CEO of the Las Cruces Green Chamber of Commerce. Doña Ana County Republican Party Chair Kimberly Skaggs, who is a candidate for state representative, also attended.
The Green Chamber and the Greater Las Cruces Chamber of Commerce presented proclamations on behalf of the groundbreaking.
Young said GRM has 16 full-time employees, including eight who are or were GRM clients.
To donate to the House of Mercy project, contact Young at 575-496-1637 and firstname.lastname@example.org. Send contributions by mail to Las Cruces Gospel Rescue Mission, P.O. Box 386, Las Cruces, N.M. 88004. Donate online at www.lcgrm.org.
The nonprofit GRM has been in operation since 1972. In addition to its shelter, kitchen and food bank, GRM provides clothing to those in need and operates Rock of Ages Thrift Store, 1420 S. Solano Drive.