And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile. – Matthew 5:41
Our vision is to transform underserved communities by empowering people to meet their own needs. We encourage people to take charge of their own lives and break the mentality of dependency by honoring these core values:
Our mission is to bring people together by sharing the love of Christ while helping them provide for their families, educate their children and strengthen their communities. We do this by adhering to three guiding principles: we are relational in our programs; we do not give anything away for free; and we do only what our neighbors ask us to do.
Using these principles, we established what we refer to as the three ‘R’s of community development – Relationships, Resources and Reconciliation
Second Mile is a faith-based community development organization that began in 1986, to help restore a declining, underserved neighborhood in Huntsville, Alabama. The neighborhood had the largest number of single parent households below the poverty line and the highest crime rate. It also had more renters than homeowners and the lowest performing elementary school in the city.
Our first initiative was the Second Mile Lawn Service that provided jobs and life skills training to about 80 teenage boys. Two years later, we opened the Neighborhood Thrift Store to provide clothing and household items at affordable prices; and to create employment opportunities for residents that were struggling to find jobs. The Second Mile Preschool and Parent Initiative soon followed after learning that the residents wanted better access to an affordable preschool and that the local elementary school was struggling to increase parent involvement.
Second Mile started with the goal of helping the residents in one underserved neighborhood learn how to advocate for themselves regardless of their location or circumstances. We continue to serve this neighborhood and others to help people enhance their quality of life through six key programs: Pride for Parents, Terry Heights and Hillendale Organization, The Second Mile Preschool, Parent Initiative, Baby Care, and The 29:11 Story.
Second Mile has big dreams for its future and we need your support to see those dreams come to fruition. We envision a building permanent home for the preschool, developing a community workforce training program, getting Parent Parties into 2,500 schools, and much more.