Location Background: Strong Tower Ministries, Inc., (STM) assists children living in destitute situations intentionally and domestic, introducing them to God’s love. The STM headquarters is located in Orange County, California. Orange County has some the most affluent and economically challenged cities all within the same county in California. Santa Ana is a city located in Orange County, which has been estimated that in certain areas of Santa Ana 30% of families are living below poverty level. Between 80-90 percent of these children live in Spanish speaking homes. On average, 60 percent of these families have less than a 9th grade education. In areas like these, churches are one of the major stabilization tools for organizing and effectively creating change for families, giving them hope and a future.
Project Overview: In October 2008, Strong Tower Ministries, Inc., partnered with several local churches to bring effective and lasting change to Santa Ana and its neighboring communities. The goal was to assist in providing much needed resources to the communities such as food, clothing, and medical services. Local churches play a key role attending to these families’ physical and spiritual needs. At the same time, STM provides the opportunity for people living within and outside these communities to engage in service on a local level.
Over a two year period, STM witnessed thousands of lives being touched in Santa Ana. The project (Santa Ana Outreach) grew from 45 families attending the first Saturday event in 2008, to routinely 500 destitute families arriving to receive food, clothing, prayer, medical, legal aid, and connect with a local church in 2010. The Santa Ana Outreach originally started in a parking lot, then expanded into a homeless outreach in other areas of Santa Ana, and eventually partnered with local churches and church organizations with outreach events throughout Orange, Los Angeles, and Riverside Counties. This ministry project saw the opening of a free medical clinic, and the addition of several warehouses that store and distribute items both locally and globally (a global example of this was over a million dollars worth of donated medical supplies sorted and sent to Haiti following the 2010 earthquake).
The project (Santa Ana Outreach) grew to the point that it took on its own identity and name. A separate non-profit was formed by STM project manager Dimitri Sirakoff in 2010 called Serve the People. Serve the People has gone on to expand its days of operation, add additional specialists and services to the free medical clinic, offer free legal aid, food pantries, and advocacy (housing) programs. Serve the People will continue to work closely with the community to determine other basic needs that are currently unavailable or unaffordable to them and thereby add such services to the organization. Although a completed project, STM continues to partner with Serve the People and their ongoing mission. See opportunities to serve.