Diamond Street Resource Center
Reaching Out Beyond Church Walls
The Diamond Street Resource Center (DSRC) started as an idea and a mission. A group of friends wanted to find a way to develop an inner city outreach program, to make an impact; to simply help people who needed help. Set in a formerly abandoned Seventh Day Adventist Church in the Garfield Neighborhood of downtown Phoenix, DSRC has come a long way since work began in 2013.
Before ever setting foot in the location that is now DSRC, several members of the Room 7 Sabbath School class did some homework. Where is there need that isn’t already being addressed? Should a property be purchased? What is our focus? We made it a matter of prayer. After all, if this “project” was going to be successful it had to have Jesus at the center. Through some excellent contacts in the community, we were introduced to the folks at Lifebridge Community Alliance. Pastor Bob graciously met with our group and told us everything he could about building a Christ-centered community outreach program. We were invited to tour their facility and left that day with many new ideas. A single purpose stood out: meet the basic needs of the people you wish to serve.
The building which now houses DSRC was refurbished with the help of countless Camelback members. Physical labor, material and financial donations and dedicated service on the Board of Directors are only a few examples of assistance willingly given by the Camelback Church family and friends in the community.
For the last four years the DSRC was able to partner with the City of Phoenix on the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, providing a location for area residents that qualified, to get free tax preparation assistance. None of it would have been possible without the help of dedicated volunteers from Camelback Church and the community! The DSRC has also hosted health fairs, food prep demonstrations, turkey giveaways and kept a small garden to eventually be used for cooking classes.
This spring we offered our first English as a Second Language (ESL) class at DSRC and although our group was small, it proved to be a great experience for all that attended. A big "shout out" goes to Jim Woods for being at DSRC faithfully every class day to make the building ready for our students and to Dani Woods for being a dedicated liaison on this endeavor without whose efforts it might not have come to pass!
Where Do We Go From Here?
We are making some much needed repairs and upgrades to our building this year with the help of our volunteers and the very talented Ramon!
We are preparing for the August ESL classes and will be looking for some volunteers to open and close the building on class days/evenings. As well as folks to keep our grounds looking nice.
We are currently exploring the possibility of partnering with a medical ministry non-profit that offers on-site basic health care to the homeless population. This is a very exciting prospective partnership for DSRC and we hope to have more to report on that project soon.
As always, we love volunteers and we solicit your ideas for projects. The mission of the Diamond Street Resource Center is to be an asset to the Garfield Neighborhood and serve the people who live there. Join us! Many hands make light work...