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Ex-Con's Homeless Service Gets National Recognition

Contact: Ron Marlette, Executive Director, Mission Solano, 707-249-1611


FAIRFIELD, Calif., Aug. 30 /Christian Newswire/ -- A program that began just eight years ago inside a donated bus is now being recognized nationally as one of the best run, hardest working charities in America. Mission Solano, a Fairfield-based nomadic homeless sheltering program, has been chosen as a 2006 Samaritan Award honoree by the Acton Institute, an ecumenical think-tank organization based in Michigan.


"We offer a program that has proven to be effective at changing the lives of homeless men, women and children, and we're very happy to have that work recognized by a group like the Acton Institute," says Mission Solano's Executive Director Ron Marlette. "Our success lies first in our deep belief that anything is possible in the life of anyone with the help of Jesus Christ. We would never have been able to start or continue our program without the commitment of local churches," he adds.


The agency uses local churches to house approximately 50 men, women and children each night, seven days a week.


Mission Solano is one of only two West Coast charities chosen as finalists in the national competition. Two hundred forty-seven (247) agencies applied for the honor. As a finalist, Mission Solano will be featured in a major article in the September 2nd edition of World Magazine, a weekly publication dedicated to faith-based news. The article, which is already posted at www.worldmag.com, chronicles the organization from its very humble beginnings to its present day plans to build a $9 million dollar, 30,300-square- feet homeless services complex, the Bridge to Life Center.


Once built, the center will provide a holistic, long-term residence program for up to 163 homeless individuals, including men, women and families. It will be the largest such complex in Northern California and is already being called "the rescue mission of the future."


The article also looks inside the life of founder Marlette, an ex-con, and tells the story of how a Billy Graham crusade changed his life and led, ultimately, to his own crusade against homelessness in his hometown.


The Acton Institute chooses its Samaritan Award recipients and finalists based on a review of a given charity's financial protocols, its effectiveness and its use of faith to accomplish its goals.


About Mission Solano

The program provides emergency shelter, food and clothing, counseling education and job-skills training to homeless throughout Solano County (a county of approximately 400,000 people). It is funded through donations and unique entrepreneurial enterprises.