stories of compassion
Charlyne’s journey started in March 2017 when the State of Michigan took guardianship of her daughter. She was homeless after leaving a domestic violence situation. “I hit rock bottom but I never gave up. I try to say that to everyone I meet—to never give up," Charlyne said.
Spenser Rolls at age 23 is a young man with insight that seems beyond his years. He was the youngest person in the Mel Trotter Ministries’ Step-Up Recovery program when he entered in late 2020, a broken man who knew he needed help. “Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I was afraid to take this step but I’m glad I did. My life has completely changed," Spenser says.
Three years ago, Erin was ready and she called her friend. She entered Mel Trotter Ministries’ Step-Up Recovery program on January 10, 2019, staying ten months before finally walking out the door drug-free.
“I knew I needed to do something,” said Erin, 37. “I learned a lot about myself while at Mel Trotter. I learned how to live everyday life without having to get high; I learned how to wake up every day and not have anxiety about getting my next high.”
Alvin and Victoria's Story
When Alvin made the decision to complete his education, he and Victoria went to Heartside Ministry, a division of MTM that offers a GED program.
Sidney once had it all— a successful flooring business with a fleet of vehicles, a six-figure salary, a home in a gated community, a beautiful wife— and had even served as a chaplain at a nonprofit helping people in need. He lost everything, however, when a serious injury sidelined him for two years and started him on a path to nowhere. His business floundered and eventually died, he faced homelessness because his medical bills and mortgage payments kept piling up and a job was hard to find thanks to his criminal record.
"The Lord is guiding me and showing me his path. I can’t say enough about what he’s already done for me.”
Board Spotlight: Jim's Story
Jim Kregel’s history with Mel Trotter Ministries goes back a generation. His father Robert, who started Kregel Publications in 1939, knew Mel Trotter himself and served on the board for MTM for years. In fact, Jim recalls his father coming home and telling him he found Mr. Trotter crying in his office one day because his dog had died.
MiChelle dreams of having her own home one day, living on her own, and giving back to the community.
“I want to mentor, tell my story, and if I can, help somebody get closer to God,” she said. “I had never prayed before, but God knows my heart and he knows what I’m trying to say. I just ask him to teach me.”
Staff Spotlight: Brian's Story
Bigelow started his job as the Step-Up Recovery advocate on Feb. 1, 2019. He’s case manager for each person in the program, overseeing their recovery and the program as a whole. Step-Up Recovery has capacity for 16—eight men and eight women—though the Covid-19 crisis caused numbers to dwindle. There are currently nine guests working through the 90-day program aimed at those who experience homelessness due to substance abuse.
Staff Spotlight: Saulo's Story
Saulo Montalvo believes in persistence with all his heart. He’s seen God’s persistent love in his own life; he’s seen his father’s persistent love month after month as he visited Saulo in prison. And he’s seen Mel Trotter Ministries’ persistent pursuing of every person who comes in the door.