Are homeless people in Grand Rapids now living on a billboard?

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It certainly looks that way if you've driven by the billboard on 131 near Wealthy street.

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While the billboard doesn't have anyone living on it, it does bring awareness of the great need to help our homeless population in Grand Rapids and West Michigan.

The billboard is a partnership with Guiding Light and Mel Trotter Ministries.

Guiding Light Development Director Starla McDermott told Fox 17

“Guiding Light, in partnership with Mel Trotter Ministries, works year-round to help men get off the streets, address their addictions and other issues and reconnect with the world, That work is especially important around the holidays, when so many of us turn to the comforts of family and home.”

McDermott also said,

“The 1,000+ men and women experiencing homelessness in our community dream of those joys, too and we look to our generous community to provide extra support as we enter the holiday season of giving.”


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The History of Guiding Light

Guiding Light was first established as West Fulton Mission in 1929 by a layman named John Van de Water. It began out of a need for meals for the unfortunate in the community. Shortly after moving to its new location, Guiding Light started what would become one of the most important components of its program. After receiving its certification from the state, Guiding Light began offering treatment for those struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. This would eventually develop into the S.T.A.R.T. program. The program has continued to evolve and is now the New Life in Christ program.

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