Featured

26
Jul

Art for Jobs 2016 Sponsor: SouthernSun Asset Management

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Stuart Harris, Senior Associate with SouthernSun, is pictured here with Marcus, an Advance Memphis program participant whom Stuart mentored through a car purchase.

Our 2016 Rembrandt level sponsor of Art for Jobs is SouthernSun Asset Management. Supporting Art for Jobs from its beginning in 2011, SouthernSun is an important partner to the work at Advance. Over the years, they’ve supported Advance in numerous ways: they have hired graduates as interns, donated lunch for class, and made gifts that have sustained programs at Advance. In addition, individual staff members have served Advance with creativity and passion. The generous support of businesses like SouthernSun Asset Management empowers our graduates to pursue their educational and professional goals and move toward financial stability.

SouthernSun AM LogoSouthernSun Asset Management, established in 1989, is a research-driven investment management firm, implementing SMID Cap, Small Cap and Global Equity investment strategies. Their name reflects a commitment to shed light on investment opportunities both at home and around the globe—a commitment that has driven the company’s work throughout their history. Although their roots are proudly established in Memphis, SouthernSun travels worldwide to seek out information they need to make sound financial decisions.

To learn more about SouthernSun Asset Management, view their website here.

To learn more about Art for Jobs, please click here.

 

5
Jun

Art for Jobs 2016: Jobs for Memphians, Art for You!


Logo AfJ 2016Make plans now to join us for the 6th annual Art for Jobs event. This year the party’s in the new Advance Memphis Warehouse – more room for the art, music, and food!

Thursday | September 15 | 2016

5-8pm

The Advance Memphis Warehouse | 575 Suzette | 38126

 

Art for Jobs exists, first, to support Memphians in 38126 who are pursuing their educational and professional goals despite the significant roadblocks presented by material poverty. The second mission of Art for Jobs is to honor the artists who make the event possible! The event will be a celebration of art, beauty, courage, and dignity. We invite you to join us on Thursday, September 15, but we also encourage you to get involved now! Visit advancememphis.org/afj2016 for all the latest event news; get started below!

The Blue | Donated by artist Emery Franklin for Art for Jobs 2014

The Blues | Donated by artist Emery Franklin for Art for Jobs 2014

  • ARTISTS: We offer a split of up to 50% and work hard to promote each artist through our blog and social media. Artists can register here. Contact Kate with questions
  • VOLUNTEERS: Support Advance and our participants by volunteering in one of the many roles we have available. There are ways to volunteer as we prepare for the event, and during the event itself. Contact Amanda to learn more. We need photographers, runners, sales assistants, party planners, and more!
  • SPONSORS: Businesses that sponsor Art for Jobs are promoted through our website and social media and at the event. There are sponsorship levels beginning at $500. View sponsorship info here and contact Steve with questions.
  • PATRONS & PROMOTERS: If you’re an art lover, plan to be there! We’ll have a wide range of prices and styles. If you want to go one step further and help us spread the word about the event, please get in touch and we’ll get you posters and Save the Date cards to hang in your business or pass out to friends!

Join us in supporting your fellow Memphians and some outstanding artists –
get involved today!

5
Apr

Advance Memphis Electives: Anger Management

“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this:
Everyone should be quick to listen,
slow to speak and slow to become angry.”
James 1:19

The Advance Memphis Anger Management class focuses on the acceptance of an ever-present reality: The reality that people make us angry sometimes. The reality that things don’t always go the way we want them to. The reality that life can and will throw some serious curve balls. It’s not the emotion that we should worry about, it’s the way we handle it. In class, we learn that our body responses come from the way we perceive the “unjust.” Were we wronged? Were we threatened? Were we disrespected, or lied to? These are just some of the things that can make us anywhere from irritated to enraged. By learning what “ticks” us off, we can combat these outbursts. We can learn that there are options. We can learn to handle anger through appropriate responses.

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Cindy, 3rd from right, with a group of Anger Management participants.

I ask the class, “what are some good reasons you should learn to handle anger appropriately?” The number one response is “to keep my job.” So what can we do differently? If habits are a repetitive behavior that begins to occur automatically, how do we overcome them? Habits are overcome only by establishing new habits that oppose the old ones. The person that argues all the time has established a habit that can be overcome by developing a habit of listening to others. We have to learn to listen to others, even when we don’t want to hear what they have to say. It’s important because we can learn from others. Developing these new habits is a key objective of the class.

One thing I share with the participants is that I once got in trouble on a job for disagreeing with my supervisor and not wanting to listen. It could very well have cost me my job. I also hear responses of others who have walked off a job because of the wrong way a conversation was going. We have to learn alternative behaviors. “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.” Hebrews 13:17. This is scripture that we learn and mediate on in Anger Management.

It seems as if submitting to authority is harder for some than others, especially on the  job. Lucretia, a recent class participant, stated that taking a time-out when she is angry is working for her. She uses the time to evaluate why she is angry and ask herself about the root cause of her anger. Then, after she meditates on this for a few minutes, her anger subsides.

I enjoy facilitating the Anger Management class because I get to encourage people to let God reconcile relationships that they have damaged due to their anger. We pray about these relationships and we role-play speaking and listening skills. We also write letters to those we have hurt because of our anger and this teaches humility.

Because many of our participants have experienced trauma, emotions can be raw and feelings can run deep. Our prayer is that by understanding where anger comes from, how our bodies and minds respond, and developing alternative habits, our participants can be empowered to manage anger in healthy ways and have lives that are more stable and more fulfilling as a result.

29
Dec

2016 Involvement Guide: Join Us!

2016 Involvement Guide ImageAs you plan and dream for ways to learn, grow, and serve in 2016, please consider using our 2016 Involvement Guide as a resource. Those who pray, give, and serve at Advance Memphis are the lifeblood of this work. The Guide contains class schedules, contact information, and volunteer roles–everything you need to make a plan to share your gifts in a way that blesses others and fits your life. We created this guide because we need roughly 240 volunteers every year, many of them in the highly relational roles that are essential to our programs. These volunteers are truly the body of Christ at work in Memphis. We thank you for considering ways you can get involved this year. CLICK HERE TO SEE THE 2016 ADVANCE MEMPHIS INVOLVEMENT GUIDE.

9
Dec

2015 Advance Memphis Outcomes

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Advance Memphis program grads and employees of the Staffing Program are seen here completing an Outsourcing project in the new Advance Memphis Warehouse, just blocks from our offices and classrooms on Vance.

In 2015, Advance Memphis, powered by 240 volunteers, 15 staff members, dozens of donors, and an incredible community of participants, operated programs that empowered the people of 38126 to move into financial security.

Below, you’ll see just a few of the tangible outcomes of the work this community did this year. There are many more life changes that are less easily measured: the 40 year old who opens his first bank account, the woman who stopped drinking, the man who proudly supports his children, the woman who earned her GED, the man with a drivers license and a new job.

THIS is how our Lord will “undo the straps of the yoke to let the oppressed go free.”


LEARNING

  • 80 participants will complete job readiness training through Work Life.
  • 61 participants received 12+ hours of GED/HSE instruction and 6 participants received their GED/HSE. The new, more difficult test is causing a nationwide decrease in pass rates. More info about this change: bit.do/gedchanges.
  • 18 students received higher-ed counseling. 10 enrolled in courses or training.
giveSUPPORT THIS WORK

HEALING

  • 165 counseling sessions were held, with 17 clients attending 3 or more sessions.
  • 15 crisis counseling sessions were provided.
  • 72 graduates attended 3 or more addiction recovery meetings this year.
  • 40 participants will complete Anger Management training.

WORKING

  • 73 graduates have been hired into temporary positions. 25 graduates have been hired into temp-to-hire positions. The average starting wage was $9.01, almost 25% above Tennessee’s minimum wage and 20 cents above our 2014 average starting wage.
  • YTD, graduate employees of our Staffing Program have earned gross wages of $1,236,000.
  • 199 graduates have been rehired after a period of unemployment.
  • 13 graduates have received fork lift certification

GROWING

  • 18 participants completed Faith & Finances training and 10 new matched saving accounts (IDAs) were opened. 12 people have been saving in their IDAs consistently for 6+ months. 3 participants purchased an asset using their IDAs.
  • 12 participants completed LAUNCH entrepreneurial training. 64% of LAUNCH alumni are still operating businesses; 2 new businesses were registered  in ‘15.

PARTNER IN THIS WORK!

  • The new Advance Memphis Warehouse (pictured above) is already providing job coaching and employment right here in the neighborhood. There is much more to come next year. Support this work through prayer and business referrals.
  • Relationships are the key to the work we do. Mentors in most of our core programs provide relational support that changes lives. Support this work by volunteering as a Champion (day, Work Life), Ally (evening, Faith & Finances), or entrepreneurial mentor (evening, LAUNCH). Support this work by volunteering. Email: acoop@advancememphis.org.

 Volunteer hours, donations, and prayers are essential.  Get involved using the information below.

JOIN THE PRAYER LETTER TEAM: kate@advancememphis.org
VOLUNTEER: acoop@advancememphis.org
GIVE: Mail to  PO Box 2201, Memphis, 38101 or go to advancememphis.org/give.

 

9
Dec

News from the LAUNCH Class for Entrepreneurs

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LAUNCH grad Quincy Foster was hired to photograph the Art for Jobs event this year. He took this photo of board member Sydney Ashby and LAUNCH Coordinator, Bryce Stout.

LAUNCH grad Quincy Foster spent 13 weeks building his photography business through Advance Memphis’s program for entrepreneurs.

He shared the following thoughts on the program: “There has been tremendous benefit as far as focusing on the task at hand, a reasonable level of accountability, completing important steps in the process toward getting the business legal, and good record keeping.”

LAUNCH Coordinator Bryce Stout has put together a newsletter with more information about this years’ graduates, their businesses, and the program outcomes. To read the LAUNCH Newsletter, please click here.

23
Nov

2015 Donation Christmas Cards

Christmas Card front 2015

FRONT OF CARD. CLICK TO ENLARGE AND SEE MORE IMAGES BELOW.

AVAILABLE NOW THROUGH TUESDAY, DECEMBER 15th.

We are grateful to all of the Advance Memphis supporters who, each year, choose to support Advance Memphis while also spreading the love and good cheer of the Christmas season.

This year we’ve selected a beautiful Christmas card, printed on 100% recycled matte card stock. The front of the card contains the verse:

let every heart
prepare him room
and heaven and nature sing.

The inside of the card states that a gift has been made to Advance Memphis in honor of the recipient. New this year, the back of the card includes a photo collage of our grads, giving your recipient a visual understanding of why this gift is important. We’ll hand sign and address these, making sure that they’re in the hands of your recipients quickly. Please click any of the images on this page to see a larger image.

To reserve your Christmas Cards, please complete this form. There is a requested $10 per card donation; the form will tell you how to complete that gift. If you have any questions, please get in touch with Kate. Thank you for supporting Advance Memphis this way!

Kate Lareau
kate@advancememphis.org
901.848.9557

Christmas Card inside 2015

INSIDE OF CARD. CLICK TO ENLARGE.

Christmas Card back

BACK OF CARD. CLICK TO ENLARGE.

2
Nov

Join Us for a Night with Just City: Corrections

This free event features music and storytelling that will explore CORRECTIONS as that system functions–and could function–in our community.  Join us from 6-8pm, Tuesday, November 10, in the Advance Memphis Warehouse at 575 Suzette, Memphis, 38126. Register to attend here


justcitybwJust City was founded in 2015 by a group of activists, attorneys, and civic leaders who saw the need for a powerful, independent voice to support the individuals, children, and families who are, or have been in contact with, the criminal justice system in the Mid-South. They advocate for strong, consistent adult and children’s right to counsel policies and accelerate community-driven solutions to the problems presented by the criminal justice system.

Led by Advance Memphis board member and longtime volunteer Josh Spickler, Just City is kicking off their inaugural year in existence by hosting events designed to get Memphians dreaming about what they want to see in a city more committed to justice. Several book club nights have discussed Bryan Stevenson’s Just Mercy, a kick off night for the organization was held at Hattiloo Theatre, and people have been invited to share their vision for a just city.

Read more about the evening at Hattiloo Theatre, because it’ll get you up to speed on the next planned event, co-hosted by Advance Memphis and Just City in Advance Memphis’s new warehouse space at 575 Suzette. Under the leadership of Pastor Jarad Bingham of Shady Grove Presbyterian, “Corrections” will bring together storytelling, music, statistics and more to help the audience experience the state of the corrections system locally and nationally, as well as the stories of those whose lives have been touched by the system.

Join us Tuesday, November 10th, from 6-8pm in the Warehouse for this unique experience. The event is free, with donations accepted for Just City’s Clean Slate Fund, which covers expenses for expungements. Register here to attend. You can follow Just City on Facebook and Twitter.

2
Oct

Life Stories

View More: http://gretchenshawphotography.pass.us/curriculumphotos

This is an example of a Life Story shared in Work Life class. Participants create their timelines and then share those in groups divided by gender.

Life Stories. We all have a unique story authored by God. My belief is that we are all right where we are supposed to be at this very moment in time. Our story has been written by God himself, however, we like to take the pen sometimes. I also believe that if it weren’t for our past, our stories, we wouldn’t be able to have the relationships that we can have with Him now.

My favorite scripture that I share with the Work Life class is from Philippians 6:1,
“For I am confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will see it through until completion,
until the day of Jesus Christ.”  

My story is still being written and so is yours.

We share Life Stories as an activity in our Work Life Class, separating the men from the women.  As one particular woman stood in front of the classroom and pulled out the most elaborate poster board obviously made with thought and time, I wondered to myself if this would be a creative story spun with loads of fun and activities (you see, she is the most outspoken woman in the class).

As she began, I immediately knew she was coming from a place of truth and pain in her life. She disclosed that she was sexually molested as a young girl and placed in foster care. She disclosed  that she was emotionally and physically abused by multiple foster parents. She tried to dress up the fact that her hurts led her to alcohol and drugs, more unwanted sex and unwanted children, given and taken by the state. The anguish she shared over taking the life of an unwanted child seemed to multiply the shame. She felt as if she was the horrible person. She shared that she felt she had no worth and no right to be treated kindly – she said she didn’t believe she deserved to live.

As I listened to her, my heart and soul shook with awe and pain. Everything in me trying to hold it together. How does she come to class everyday? How does she hold up her head when I would want to cover mine?  As an instructor and a woman that works with other women in addictions, I’ve heard these stories before, just not as raw and emotional. As she continued to share her story with us, I started praying for her, I prayed that God would heal her wounds, that He would make her feel valued and loved, that He would help her feel His presence.

I think we all felt His presence in that classroom. As she finished, we prayed and she asked Jesus to come into her life. As I prayed and spoke God’s truth to her, she wanted more. They all wanted more.  The personal psychological and emotional toll is even devastating to me. She expressed anger and disappointment with God. She believed he was ignoring her cry and turning His back on her. But she was willing to fall at the foot of the cross-without the hope of God’s help, she felt there was no other way to end the pain. She is in critical need of accurate teaching about forgiveness and grace. God, help me to commit to being vigilant in praying for her. Help me to represent you as an Image Bearer and live in Kingdom Action. God please help me to continue to show her You,  where she can trust You and let you continue to spin her story with redemption and grace.

 Our heavenly father welcomes the prodigal today. He watches and waits for us to come home. He is ready with redemption and free with forgiveness. God gives grace without hesitation. He wants to heal her pain more than I do. Our Father provides the ultimate healing from our trauma as wounded children.

Will you join me in prayer that we would all allow God to continue to write our stories and for us to trust in Him and put down our own pen.

“Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.” Psalm 139:16

Cindy Chapple is a Work Life
graduate and has worked at
Advance Memphis since her
graduation in 2009.

cchapple@advancememphis.org.

 

14
Sep

Art for Jobs 2015 Artist: KATIE HILL

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Metamorphosis | 36 x 48 | $700

Katie has an MA (Hons) degree in German and History of Art from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. She grew up in Munich, Germany and Moscow, Russia.

She has worked in art Galleries in Edinburgh, Scotland and Nashville, TN and has taught art outreach with the Frist Center for Visual Arts and the Dixon Gallery as well as elementary school art in downtown Memphis and Frayser, TN. Her focus is on abstract work and portraiture.

For more information on Art for Jobs, taking place Thursday, September 17th, from 5-8pm, go here.

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The Dance | 45 x 33 | $500

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Where do we go from here | 36 x 36 | $400