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Turlock Gospel Mission makes progress with building funds, in need of more donations
In January 2008, the Turlock Gospel Mission started serving nightly meals to local homeless and in-need families. Today, the mission is getting ready to break ground on a year-round shelter. - photo by Journal file photo



Each day, the Turlock Gospel Mission is getting closer to its fundraising goals with the help of Turlock’s generous citizens. 

In an effort to help raise funds for the Turlock Gospel Mission as the organization prepares to construct a year-round homeless shelter, City Councilman Forrest White issued a challenge asking Turlock residents to match his donation of $500 to help TGM reach its $500,000 goal.

Turlock Gospel Mission Executive Director Tim Guerino says that since White issued his challenge, more than 35 Turlock residents have responded, donating $500 each towards the construction of the new facility.

“We have gotten a really good response, with more and more coming in every day,” said Guerino. “Altogether now we have raised over $350,000, just $150,000 short of goal.”

According to Guerino, the non-profit organization needs a total of $500,000 to break ground on the new facility, which they are hoping to accomplish come Jan. 1. Currently, Guerino says that the organization is working on submitting plans for permits with the City – a process that may not seem thrilling, but is very meaningful and exciting to the organization as it continues to make progress with the project.

“Forrest’s challenge has really helped us,” said Guerino. “We believe that we can make it to our goal by the first.”

As a non-profit organization, Turlock Gospel Mission does not receive any state or government funding. With plans to build a multi-million dollar facility aimed towards helping the local homeless community, the organization has had to rely on the help of local residents and community members.

“This is truly going to be the people’s mission,” said Guerino. “There’s no government funding here; it is the folks of the Turlock area that made it happen. There’s something to be said about Turlock, because the progress we’ve made in donations says volumes about the character of the people in this community.”

Headed by Torre Reich Construction Inc. of Turlock, the year-long homeless shelter will feature a beautifully designed facility with multiple beds, bathrooms and showers, a full kitchen and dining area, and other unique features.

“It is going to be first class,” said Guerino. “This is something that this and surrounding communities have come together to build. And their investment will be something to be proud of, because Turlock is standing out and setting an example. It says a lot about the people here and their willingness to help.”

Should everything go according to plan, the facility is officially slated to open on Oct. 1, 2014. With just $150,000 left to meet the goal, the Turlock Gospel Mission is still accepting donations in any amount either online at or by mail or in person at the Turlock Gospel Mission, located at 1030 East Ave., P.O. Box 1231. For more information call TGM at 656-1033.