Providing Help and Hope for Homeless Women and Children

Open ArmsThe face of homelessness in America is changing. Instead of the stereotypical disheveled middle-aged man with a bottle in a bag, the typical homeless person today may be a young woman with a baby in her arms and a toddler at her side.

How you can help: You can give now to provide homeless women and single women with children an opportunity for a whole new life. And we have volunteer opportunities available.

KRM ministers to these women and children through Open Arms, which includes the following programs:

Crisis Shelter: Single women or single women with children enter Open Arms through a three-night crisis shelter program. After this, guests may choose not to stay, or to join our GROWING program.

GROWING (Graciously Restoring Our Women In Need of God): This program requires a commitment from the woman to set reasonable goals toward independent living and to actively pursue those goals. There are daily devotions, classes (such as Goal Setting, Managing Finances, and Job Search), and a computerized Learning Center (for improving computer skills and/or preparing for a GED exam). Residents must agree to keep their personal sleeping area clean, complete a housecleaning chore, and abide by a curfew. At 9:00 pm, after the children have been put to sleep, there is a Bible study.

New Life Program: This one-year program is for women who want to take the time and effort to address underlying issues that caused her to be homeless. Women in the program have access to additional resources such as addiction recovery classes, individual and group counseling, GROWING in Christ discipleship classes, and other individualized help. New Life is descriptive of the nature and result of the program. Women who complete this program have been given the skills to live an independent and stable lifestyle.











May 29, 2019  New Life Graduation!
L to R: Teresa, Rebekah, and Whitney-Open Arms Graduates

Transitions: Single women who complete the New Life program may qualify for an additional six-month stay in KRM’s Transitions house. Women in this program must be active in a church, and have a job and transportation. They pay 30 percent of their income in programming fees to get ready for the expenses of independent living. They have responsibilities in the house, and are accountable to the Women’s Ministry staff.

Success Story

Create in Me a Clean Heart — by Deania

Read the inspiring story of a former Open Arms resident.










“Create in me a clean heart oh God, and renew a steadfast spirit in me.” That is Psalm 51:10, and it’s my prayer.

Growing up, my father was angry and abusive, physically, mentally, and verbally, especially toward my mother.  So as I got older, that’s what I thought “love” was.  I also struggled with low self-esteem.  I’m a big, shapely girl, and my dad always made me try to hide it.  So I always hated how I looked. I’m self-conscious, and I put up with a lot of abuse in my life because I thought that was all I was worth.

I got pregnant at 17 and was forced to marry a man who didn’t want to be a father, a husband, or married to me.  I was raped at 21 and had another child.  And by my mid-20s, I was a full-blown addict with four kids. I shoplifted and prostituted myself for drugs.

In 2011, I tried to get clean. But then I got involved with another abusive man, and then things got really bad.  He got me into selling drugs.  We lived in an abandoned house with no water or utilities.  And he beat me every day.  He beat me so bad once, I ended up having seizures and going to the emergency room.  The only relief I ever had were the times I went to jail.  But that’s where everything finally started to change, too.

I got involved with a jailhouse ministry that surround me with love and acceptance I never experienced before.  These people believed I could change, and I believed them. So when I got out of jail in the spring of 2016, I came to Open Arms.  When I came here, people here didn’t see Deania the drug addict, the prostitute, or the “big girl.” They saw me how Jesus sees me — smart, intelligent, and beautiful. And they hold that mirror up to me every day.

Today, I’m safe, sober, and I’m starting to believe what they see in me.  They believe I’m going to make it, and so do I.  Because Psalm 51:10 is my prayer.  Every day!

To read more success stories from KRM, please visit our Newsletter Page.

Providing Help and Hope for Homeless Men

Homelessness transcends age, race, religion, and even education.  We see and serve people from all walks of life.  There are countless situations and circumstances that might bring a man to the point of needing to seek shelter and residency at Kokomo Rescue Mission.  Some are here by court order.  Some are temporarily without work or are just passing through and their stay is quite brief.  Many stay longer because they desire to make lasting transformations of their lives. Because there are such diverse needs among the men staying at KRM, we have a variety of programs designed to best serve each individual as he addresses his specific challenges.

Photo of Men’s Short-term Shelter

How you can help: You can give now to provide homeless men an opportunity for a whole new life. And we have volunteer opportunities available.

Short-term Shelter: Following an intake interview and introduction to our entry-level dormitory, our chaplains help the men assess their situation, begin to set goals and decide which program best meets their needs.  Men participating in the short-term program, [E]ntry, receive food, shelter and other necessary amenities.  While their physical needs are met, they are also ministered to spiritually, receive assistance with applying for jobs, SNAP benefits, and health insurance.  They are also navigated towards services to help them achieve positive outcomes and become independent.  We offer additional programs for longer-term residents that go deeper on both the physical and spiritual level.

Education Opportunities:  Though KRM does not offer academic classes onsite, our community is fortunate to have many opportunities for adults to continue their education.  If a resident has a specific academic goal in mind, the Kokomo Rescue Mission staff will help the resident connect with the Excel Center, Kokomo High School Career Center, Ivy Tech Community College, and Indiana University Kokomo.  In addition to those resources, KRM provides program-related classes and training such as financial responsibility and job readiness training.


Success Story

Free from Slavery

Read the inspiring story of a former men’s shelter resident.

“I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” – Philippians 4:13

That verse is my favorite Bible passage, because I know Jesus can take everything bad that’s happened in my life and turn it into good,” says Jerome, a 47-year-old guest at Kokomo Rescue Mission. “Jesus Christ is the only one who can transform my life.”
Jerome has endured a lifetime of hardship. For 11 years as a child, the destructive abuse he suffered from his stepfather left him with severe mental illness, and he’s been in and out of jails and psychiatric units throughout his adult life. He’s been on several  psychotropic drugs to control his illness, but he says the side effects were worse than the illness. “There were times I thought I was going to die,” he says. “For the past 15 years, I’ve been on Prolixin, which is supposed to help manage paranoia and other schizophrenic symptoms. But for me, it just bypassed all my sense of reality.”
He’s rarely worked because he’s been on disability since the age of 25. Loneliness has haunted him his entire life. “But I’ve always had a good friend in Jesus,” he says. “I know that. God has always been there looking after me through other people.”
After his latest release from jail six weeks ago, Jerome had nowhere to go. He wanted to start over somewhere safe, so he came to Kokomo Rescue Mission, where he hopes he can learn to “stand on my own two feet and take responsibility for my life, to be independent,” without drugs, through the healing power of Jesus Christ.
“I believe Jesus can set me free from this slavery to drugs and mental illness,” he says. “Here
I’m surrounded by people who love God and who are holding me accountable. I have a spiritual family that is supporting me. I feel better about myself today than I ever have.”
“Thank you for helping me grow closer to God, and helping me learn a new way of life and how to live the way Christ wants me to live.”  – Jerome

To read more success stories from KRM, please visit our Newsletter Page.


Kokomo Rescue Mission offers a variety of ministries to the community, including feeding programs, Thanksgiving, Christmas events, and more.

Feeding the Hungry

In 2018, KRM served 118,999 meals to hungry men, women, and children, and provided $67,735 in groceries, clothing, bedding, furniture and dishes to income qualified clients.

Hot, nutritious meals are available to the public twice daily in the Mission’s dining room. Lunch is served at 12 noon; supper is served at 4:30 pm. These meals are open to anyone who needs a meal. For guests in the Mission’s shelters, three meals are served every day.

Grocery and Clothing Vouchers: Groceries and Clothing Vouchers are distributed at the Mission’s Main Office (at 321 W. Mulberry St) through the Assistance Office.  To apply for assistance the following items are needed:

  • Photo Id for the person making the application
  • Social Security Card for each member of the household
  • Proof of Income – any ONE of the following items:
    • Previous year’s IRS 1040 form.
    • Letter from Family Service showing approval for Food Stamps (SNAP) and the date approved.
    • Current Food Stamp (SNAP) card AND a grocery receipt less than 30 days old showing a balance greater than $0.00.
    • A recent award letter from Medicaid, TANF, WIC, SSI or SSD OR a letter stating the application has been filed for government assistance.
    • A copy of applicant’s lease or most recent re-certification letter showing the applicant is living in subsidized housing.

 Box Fan Program:  To qualify for box fans please read the Assistance list above, but know there is additional information regarding this program.  Please read below:

  • If you have received a fan in the last 3 years, you do not qualify
  • If you have central air or window units, you do not qualify
  • Limit 1 fan per household
  • Available during the months of June, July and August AND while supplies last

The Assistance Office Hours are:
Monday – Friday  10:00 am – 3:30 pm by Appointment ONLY.
Appointments can be made by calling our Main Office at: 765-456-3838
or in person during regular business hours:
Monday 9:30 AM to 4 PM and Tuesday through Friday 8 AM to 4 PM.
Our office is located at 321 W. Mulberry Street, Kokomo, IN 46901

Food to You: KRM’s mobile food pantry distributes groceries every Wednesday in Kokomo neighborhoods where no pantry is within walking distance. Here’s the monthly schedule:

  • 1st Wednesday – Reformation Faith Ministries  12 – 1PM  (1300 S. Courtland Ave.)
  • 2nd Wednesday – Carver Community Center  12 – 1:30 PM  (1030 N Purdum)
  • 3rd Wednesday – Kokomo Regency Trailer Park  12 – 1 PM  (4508 E 200 S)
  • 4th Wednesday – Pine Valley Apartments Community Room 12 – 1 PM

You can volunteer to help feed our hungry neighbors, or provide needed meals today by giving online through our secure server.

Red Ribbon Christmas

Kokomo Rescue Mission’s Red Ribbon Christmas Outreach provides boxes of toys, gifts, food and toiletries for families throughout the six-county area served by the Mission.

Volunteers fill the boxes with gifts appropriate for the age and gender of each family member. Each person receives a new gift purchased by the Mission, and extra gifts lovingly reconditioned by volunteers throughout the year.

When the box has been filled with gifts for the family, it is taken to a Christmas Warehouse where volunteers wrap the gifts. Boxes are also delivered to homes by volunteers.

In 2018, Red Ribbon Christmas boxes were delivered to 600 families and 1,733 people overall. A special thanks to the We Care organization, which donated $105,000 in 2017 to help make this outreach possible.

Volunteer with Us!







If you’d like to help with this year’s Red Ribbon Christmas Outreach, please check back here in September to find dates, times, locations, and volunteer application info. Volunteer drivers must complete this form, and arrive with a copy of their license and proof of insurance.

If you’d like to be a recipient of a Red Ribbon Christmas Box, please click here to see what documents you’ll need.  To find out the locations of where applications are being taken please click here click on Christmas Application Dates 2018.

For further information, please contact KRM’s Special Events and Volunteer Coordinator at (765) 456-3838.

Thanksgiving Banquet

Sometimes the first step toward a changed life is a simple meal — and for many of our hungry, homeless, and/or hurting neighbors, that process begins with a Thanksgiving dinner. It’s one of Kokomo Rescue Mission’s biggest annual events (we expect to serve some 600 meals this Thanksgiving), and it’s a beacon of God’s love to the community.

Meal time and location

At Grace United Methodist Church, a traditional Thanksgiving meal will be delivered to shut-ins at 10:00 am and dinner will be served at the church’s fellowship hall on Thanksgiving Day, from 11:30 am – 1:00 pm.

How you can help You can donate food for the big event. To prepare and serve 600 meals, we’ll need:

  • 24 Large Turkeys
  • 8 Hams
  • 40 – #10 Cans Green Beans
  • 40 – #10 Cans Corn
  • 600 Servings of Potatoes (instant)
  • 600 Dinner Rolls
  • Coffee

To volunteer on Thanksgiving Day, please call the Special Events Coordinator at (765) 456-3838. Call early because volunteer positions fill quickly.

Serving LineThanksgiving prep workFamily

Volunteer for any of the Outreach Services by going to our Volunteer page.