In 1997, inspired by the vision of Dr. John Wayne Smith, congregations, community leaders, and healthcare professionals came together to care for those without the resources to receive healthcare.
Over the next 17 years, hundreds of volunteers provided compassionate care to thousands who were sick through our charitable clinic, expanding treatment to include medical, dental, vision, and pharmacy. Included in that care was tending to the spiritual wounds that poverty inflicts upon those trapped in its cruel grip.
In 2014, our vision looked beyond physical healthcare. It was abundantly clear that poverty was at the core of every patient’s condition. Recognizing that if the impact and reasons for poverty weren’t included in the care provided, the cycles of crisis, chronic disease, and suffering would not be disrupted.
Poverty disruption means that a bridge is built, a map is drawn, and a path is forged for those who are stranded in poverty, whether generational or situational. CCMC simply provides the opportunity and guidance to facilitate the discovery of a way to traverse a bridge over poverty’s turbulent tyranny and build a more sustainable future that includes hope. Our poverty disruption Getting Ahead classes and community awareness Bridge to Hope workshops have brought results that not only build bridges for those ready to change, but ultimately benefit the entire community.
At the heart of everything we do is advocacy. Our Charitable Clinic volunteer healthcare professionals advocate for patients who would otherwise suffer with untreated disease and pain. Our Poverty Disruption programs advocate for those who are ready to cross the bridge from poverty to sustainability. And then there are those who face urgent and immediate, destabilizing crises: a sudden health catastrophe, a life changing event, eviction, shut off utilities, loss of a job, lack of shelter during extreme weather, or the devastation left by a pandemic. Our Advocacy Services step in to help desperate people access the services and resources they will need in order to stabilize.
Advocates not only look at the presenting circumstance, we assess each client’s situation. Do they have a job? Do they have ID, a Social Security card, birth certificate, or necessary documents to move forward and acquire jobs or housing? Through our advocates’ experiences and collaborative relationships with community organizations and resources, we know the questions to ask, the direction to go, and the referrals to make. With guidance, clients are encouraged to develop a strategy and then are provided with follow up so they have the opportunity to transition from living crisis to crisis and begin building plans to move beyond the tyranny of the moment.
Since our beginnings in 1997, our mission to improve life for our under-served, under-resourced neighbors has remained the same. The ways we fulfill that mission adjust to the needs of our community and the conditions we collectively find ourselves in. CCMC stands at the ready, coming alongside those who need an advocate, a guide, a friend, and a healer. When we do so, when we help people to stabilize, it is good for all of us.
Since 1997, CCMC has worked to improve life for our under-served, under-resourced neighbors