|FIT January 2010 Update||
|By sblankenship | 28 Jan 2010 ||
The following is an excerpt from an update from Dr. Don Pratt, President of Florida Integrity Training. The FIT program uses several Living Free curriculums including Insight, Free to Grow, Anger, Our Master or Our Servant, and Handling Loss and Grief.
Somewhere in all this zeal and activity, focus has been lost. We exist to service our clients. It really does not matter how much it costs us, how hard it is to do or to get set up. It does not even mean anything if we are snubbed or go unrecognized within our own church communities. What we can say, though, is that we have seen powerful changes through Christ in the lives of the small groups of people that we work with. We would rather help a small number in a big way rather than make a big splash with numbers in superficial ways.
...Over a year ago... we lost our main source of funding, and we could no longer provide our books to the inmates and clients. We tried different coping strategies such as teaching without our curriculum books. Classes dropped to 10% because we found that the books, which our clients cannot afford, are the key to success in our program. They provide structure, focus, and a comprehensive plan for the bettering the lives of the broken hearted and downtrodden.
Then some wonderful things started happening. Some of our dedicated facilitators began purchasing books for their own classes (about $150), and the classes went on. We started asking more for donations, and more of them came in. Interest in our leading training has steadily grown. This month, for example, we have leader training sessions in Providence, Rhode Island and Brooksville, Florida. Next month we will have two more, one in Bradenton and one in Miami. Every month someone new finds us on the web and contacts us for materials. They are from all over the U.S. and represent various denominations. Some even come for leader training.
Today... there are many opportunities and challenges. We need prayer for leaders to work our curriculum as well as favor to be allowed into the facilities where we could minister. We need funds, especially for books and our printed certificate and tracking services. Specifically, we have an immediate need for male volunteers... We already have the approval and the clients. This is a rare opportunity where the institution is inviting us in.
In spite of the obstacles, there are many rewards, and the rewards are deep and satisfying. By “staying with” our clients and being patient, we see them blossom right in front of our eyes. We were there for them when they needed us.