Who would have thought that simple household chores could save lives? Light Under The Bridge, (LUTB) Non -Profit, has launched its latest fundraising endeavor “Community Blessings”. LUTB offers simple lawn work service such as moving grass, raking leaves, pulling weeds, and household chores such as window washing, household cleaning/organizing, laundering services, and moving services such as packing, hauling, & unloading your next move. ALL proceeds raised through these Community Blessings goes directly to rescuing and restoring lives of women and men from local human trafficking, domestic violence, homelessness, addictions, and emotional trauma.
Light Under The Bridge Ministries (LUTB), a local Manatee County non profit, provides a proven and unique 3-Phase program to help individuals and their families; bringing about full restoration from crisis, setback, and personal distress in their lives caused by Human Trafficking, Domestic Violence, Homelessness, Addiction, Incarceration Transition, and Emotional Trauma through LUTB’s Christian Transitional Restoration Homes. LUTB helps individuals and their families through a proven faith-based process to societal recovery and restoration from crisis, setback, and personal distress experienced in their lives. To discover victory over personal struggles and battles, through healing and transformation that sets their lives back on track, to hold employment, return to school and pursue healthy life styles with family and others. Residents participate in a structured curriculum offering employment coaching, computer classes, Personal Integrity & Addictions, Decision Making, Anger Management, Relationships/Dating & Marriage, Loss & Grief, Finances/Economics, Bible Study, and much more.
Light Under The Bridge is transforming the tomorrows of many people. Pastor Kevin Kerkof, co-founder, explains, “We have residents with a wide range of crisis situations that they are recovering from. Some have come to our program out of escaping domestic violence, human trafficking, homelessness, and others battled drug & alcohol addictions. Typically, residents are finding their way to the LUTB program through referrals from hospitals, jail, or word of mouth. We were surprised to learn that over 50% of our women residents have been human trafficking victims, over 75% of our women have been domestic violence victims, and 100% of our women are considered homeless or were facing homelessness. Its difficult to categorize residents as to what precisely their crisis or issue was that led them here, because so many of the crisises overlap. For example, you’ll have a woman who is homeless, but her journey to homelessness might have began with a boyfriend who got her into drugs who then began beating her who then forced her into human trafficking prostitution, and she might have learned about LUTB while in jail on prostitution charges or while in the hospital from overdosing. For her, she’s dealing with multiple facets of healing that need to take place, from addiction, domestic violence, human trafficking, and homelessness. Our goal is to bring healing and transformation to these residents’ lives through a lot of love, a sense of family, counseling, faith and prayer, education, job skills, financial skills, and helping them rebuild their life. We are here to help them walk through the journey of rebuilding and getting their life back on track.”
LUTB is preparing to strengthen its grassroots fight on human trafficking through not only their existing transitional houses, but adding more houses, and building awareness for victims and women in crisis through posting a 24 hour crisis helpline number on as many billboards, buses, and public restrooms throughout the county. Pastor Kevin Kerkof explains, “This kind of local grass roots fight requires a lot of funding and fundraising endeavors. Because we are faith based, both federal and state grants will not assist us. Therefore, the burden of this fight falls on every individual, business, church, and group in the county. And we desperately need your assistance as we rely on individual contributions.” Its important to note that Light Under The Bridge is 100% volunteer run, there is not a single paid staff member, all the staff are willing volunteer missionaries who have poured out their lives for this endeavor. In addition to LUTB’s “Community Blessing” campaign, LUTB also has a warehouse thrift store location at 6223 29th ST E Unit 1, Bradenton, FL 34203. All the funds raised through the sale of furniture, appliances, and various merchandise goes directly to the LUTB program.
In addition to LUTB’s two restoration homes for women, LUTB is preparing to open its new restoration home for men in a few weeks in Manatee County. Pastor Kevin explains, “The most important requirement is that the men and women who contact us have to “want” the program, they have to “want” their lives to be different. If they want it, then we can help them transform their tomorrows.”
Light Under The Bridge is in desperate need for a large passenger van to be donated. In addition, they are seeking out monetary donations to help fund the Transitional Restoration Homes. For more information or to schedule your Community Blessing, LUTB can be contacted at 941-567-4007 Tues-Sat from10am-4pm, or for further information, check out their website at www.LightUnderTheBridge.com