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Expanding our reach: Women’s program to open in the Fall

Chris Rutledge

Since 1999, the Central Coast Rescue Mission has been a beacon of hope to the community, for those who have burned every bridge, tried dozens of times to quit, and are mere shadows of who they used to be. Our white and blue triplex at the North end of town has been there for those who have hit rock bottom and are ready to make a change. We’ve been here for those who have lost their direction and have a willingness to rediscover who God has made them to be.

Or rather, we’ve been there for men. Starting in 2022, we will be there for women as well.

We have purchased a six-bedroom home in Santa Maria with large bedrooms, a beautiful great room, a tranquil backyard. Single women in our program will spend 10 months in individual counseling from accredited counselors, receive vocational training, and get to the roots of God’s will for their lives. We plan to add services for women with children in the near future.

We know this program is vital because in the last three years we have received around 20 calls each month asking about programs for women. Women call in with tears, frustration, desperation, and sometimes anger, sharing their fears of protective services taking their kids away if they don’t get clean, of abusive or addicted partners who trap them in cycles of addiction, of stories filled with trauma. The one thing they need is a place where they can break the shackles of addiction and live in the freedom of being a child of God. We believe in God’s radical mercy and grace and see this program as a place to find both physical and spiritual redemption.

Our supporters and partners know we don’t want to be everything to everyone; we specialize in long term recovery programs. We believe long term programs lead to long term transformation. We specialize in programs that are holistic, faith-based, and grace-filled. We hire experts, people who know their brokenness and need for grace. We, as are all God’s people, are called to be wounded healers.

Yet, we aren’t doing this alone. We have strong ties with other specialists, like Santa Barbara Probation and Public Defenders, local shelters like Good Samaritan, and Behavioral Wellness. We partner with incredible local churches like Grace Baptist, First Christian, Radiant Church, Foursquare, and Heritage. And we need help getting this home ready to live in. We need beds and dishes. We need to pay for the electricity and the hot water. We need a van for transport. We need support from the community.

We are stepping out in faith, adding about 50 percent to our operating expenses, because our supporters give sacrificially. Whether it’s around the holidays or Easter when we receive donations for meals, during our May Match Campaign when our donors generously have their gifts matched by our incredible pledges, or those donors who choose to give monthly. I want to be clear: while we do have needs, we are able to open this program because of the financial support we’ve already received from our donors. We are thankful that our donors believe in the work we do and are looking forward to the ways God will use this program to bless our community.

If you have the means and desire to support this new program, we need your support. We’re stepping out in this because we believe God has laid it on the hearts of our community to support it. As God commanded us to care for the widow, love the prostitute, and support the broken hearted, you can make change possible for clients in this program. When we love the outcast and care for the vulnerable, we gain a community where children don’t go hungry. Where men and women who have made some undeniable mistakes have a second chance… if they’re willing to put in the work. Where families are reunited and strengthened by recovery and the cessation of generational cycles of addiction and abuse.

We’re so excited for this opportunity. We’re grateful to serve in a community of people who want to live for something bigger than themselves. We believe God is moving in the Central Coast and has big plans to heal the sick and abandoned. We hope you’ll join us!

To support this program and the ongoing work of the Mission, you can donate at

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