The HEARTS EXTENDED Program was initiated in the fall of 1999 to assist workers who have decided to leave the work.
Often, for various reasons, workers feel "trapped" in the work. Workers who leave the work are usually given a very small amount of money (a couple of hundred dollars) and that's the end of it. Some have nowhere to go and have no clue how to operate in a world that requires very specific job skills. In some cases they have no family to assist them, or family who are unwilling or unable to assist them, and they really have nowhere to turn to get started again.
The HEARTS EXTENDED program was NOT set up to try to get workers to leave the fellowship!
We realize that the decision to leave the work is a big decision by itself. What they need is a place to go to awhile, a refuge, a safe place, to be anonymous and to think and plan their future with some guidance from people who care.
Professing and non-professing people have pledged one or both of the following:
1. Willingness to open their home for a worker to stay temporarily until they can plan the direction they need to go. This is for rest and planning purposes. The worker and the location would remain completely anonymous to give those involved the privacy they need during this time.
2. Some have promised to keep an envelope in their home marked "HEARTS EXTENDED." In this envelope they put $10 on the first day of every month. When the financial assistance is needed by a worker each person in the program would be instructed where to SEND some of the money (but never more than half of what is in the envelope). Please note that at no time does the co-ordinator of this program collect or handle any money.
Money that is saved would be used to help an exiting worker take training classes, get a car, get an apartment; generally to get on their feet. Whatever the need is, we would assist to the extent that we could do so.
Why are we doing this? Back in late August of 1999 a young brother worker (30's in age) was in the chatroom and I discovered that he was wanting to leave the work but had no clue how he could manage financially on the outside. (Unfortunately my computer crashed before I could give him my phone number. I cried all weekend and prayed about this that he would come back into the chatroom and let us help him. Had he returned to the chatroom I would have called all my professing relatives and asked their assistance to help him.) By early the next week a plan came to mind and it was received very well by many folks.
The HEARTS EXTENDED program is not limited to any one group of people. All those wishing to help, whether you were a former professing Friend or if you are going to meeting now, are invited to help. The purpose is simply to assist a worker should they need the help.
We are depending on professing and non-professing folks to let workers know (casually, of course) that there is such a support group out there. No doubt, workers won't find out unless professing people tell them or unless they have internet access and have the courage to tell they are a worker in need.
One might ask: "Why wouldn't a worker go to the friends in their field and try to find a place?" Simply because that might be threatening to those friends and they might not feel comfortable being involved.
When a worker is being helped by this program ONLY those contributing the assistance will ever know that that worker has been helped.
If you are interested in this program and have not already written me about it, and would like to participate, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org Please provide the following:
( ) I want to offer my home as a possible place of refuge
( ) I want to put $10 per month in an envelope in my home to save to help someone when it is needed.
Please do not feel bad if you cannot do both. We need more people doing the $10/month banking in the home more than we need more homes.