Shelter reports year-end numbers


Guiding Light is a homeless shelter in downtown Grand Rapids that runs rehab and back-to-work programs. Photo via

A downtown shelter hosted thousands of overnight visits this past year as part of its mission to help men find hope.

Guiding Light Mission in Grand Rapids released its annual report last month, giving audited details on its last fiscal year from July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014.

“We rejoice with the men when they succeed. We believe in second chances for those who don’t,” writes Stuart Ray, executive director, Guiding Light Mission.

The numbers

Guiding Light hosted 19,885 overnight visits.

The nonprofit held 263 chapel services and conducted 1,222 small group and individual counseling sessions, as well as 520 Bible-study classes.

About 48 men graduated from Guiding Light’s drug and alcohol rehabilitation and workforce-readiness programs — and about 80 percent of the men remain alcohol and drug free. Seventy-eight percent of the men are now working and 74 percent of them are independently housed.

Guiding Light also helped about 200 men through its computer center.

“Just like the New Year, Guiding Light Mission offers a fresh new year for those who need it most,” Ray writes. “We are far from a flophouse. We are an institution that offers a unique educational experience for those needing radical transformation.”

Bottom line

Guiding Light’s income was $2,544,281, with 50 percent of the money coming from corporations, 34 percent coming from people, 10 percent coming from foundations and six percent from other sources.

Its expenses totaled $2,500,947, with 75 percent of the number going toward programs, 16 percent going toward development and 9 percent going toward administrative. Volunteer hours totaled 8,958, a valued of about $198,240.  

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