Fresh Start’s primary focus is helping families achieve long-term self-sufficiency through a nine-month residential and educational program.
Our Mission is: To share love and compassion through a comprehensive educational, vocational, and economic housing program to help homeless families achieve self-sufficiency.
Transitional Housing (9 Months)
Fresh Start operates three major programs: two are housing and education programs for homeless families; the third is open to the public, and is our primary funding source for the housing and education programs. The three Fresh Start programs are: Transitional Housing, Affordable (Step-up) Housing, and Repeat Street Thrift Store.
Our Transitional Housing Program is a nine-month educational program that includes housing. We have ten (10) two and three bedroom units available in the program. To qualify, residents must be:
- A FAMILY (ONE OR MORE ADULTS WITH CUSTODY OF CHILDREN)
- DRUG AND ALCOHOL FREE (TESTED UPON ENTRY AND RANDOMLY)
- EMPLOYED 4-6 WEEKS UPON ENTRY.
- ABLE TO PAY MONTHLY UTILITIES FOR THEIR APARTMENT
The program requires residents to participate in three mandatory weekly activities to facilitate financial independence:
- WEDNESDAY NIGHT GROUP CLASSES (1 HOUR)
- INVESTMENT TO THE FAMILY SAVINGS PLAN (10% OF HOUSEHOLD INCOME) AND PROGRAM FEES (20% OF INCOME)
- WEEKLY APPOINTMENTS WITH LIFE SKILLS & EDUCATION STAFF, TO WORK ON INDIVIDUAL (FAMILY) DEVELOPMENT PLANS, AND THE GOALS ESTABLISHED THEREIN
Our Affordable Housing program is a one-year step-up housing program. The program is geared towards graduates of our transitional housing program who are ready to be self-sufficient, but may require reduced rent while they recover and build their financial and rental credit history.
We have ten (10) two and three bedroom units available in this program. The only requirement for this program is to pay your rent each month on-time! Renters in this program are still able to access to the “perks” they received in our Transitional Housing Program (staff assistance, referrals, classes, food pantry, tutors, etc.,) but they no longer have the rules from the transitional program (curfews, no visitors, etc.). This year gives them time to build a rental history with us, while they continue to improve credit score, save money, etc.
The Thrift Store was opened in 2014 as a revenue source for Fresh Start’s housing and education programs. The store inventory is donated by generous citizens and businesses. Once inventory is received, it is cleaned, repaired, priced and sold by volunteers in the store.
Pick-up is available for some donations, as long as the donations are in good condition and suitable for re-sale. Please do not ask us to pick up your trash. Deliveries are also available in limited locations for a fee. Call the store at 850.200.4006 for details, schedules, and fees..
Education & Life Skills
Board of Directors
James Curry – President
Michael Cheney – Vice President
Chris Parker – Past President
Gene Barker – Treasurer
Tammy Magee – Secretary
Ken LaPee – Director
Steve Baxter – Director
Edward Burns – Director
Jason Monroe – Director
Kent Vancil – Director
Jim Krug – Director
Ron Evans – Director
Scott Beavers – Director
Tracy McCreary – Director
Mary Ann Day – Director
Jeff Hooton – Director
Melissa Heath – Director