PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — The ACTS program, which stands for Another Chance Transitional Service, has been helping locals in Pensacola who were previously incarcerated, homeless, or a veteran since 2013.
They have helped more than 400 men and women start a new chapter in their lives but more importantly giving them the hope they needed.
However, after completing many renovations, adding a kitchen where they can serve meals to the community, painting the exterior, and renovating the floors, they were recently told the building was sold and needed to evacuate in about 60 days.
They are now asking for help from the community to find a new place to keep their program going.
Director of the ACTS Program Bishop Leon Rankins says, “Every day when people are walking through these doors they are hurting, they are crying, they are bruised, they just need somebody to talk too and they need somebody to listen.”
For eight years now, that’s exactly what they have been providing for the community.
Bishop Leon Rankins was born and raised in Pensacola and tells WKRG News 5 there’s been a serious need in the area and not many other options for the residents they help.
“It is strategically placed in a heavily crime ridden area and that is intentional because we want to be a bright spot in a community where it seems like all hope is gone,” Rankins said.
70 percent of their clients have previously been incarcerated, and this program gives them an opportunity for a second chance.
“We first started the program as a way to the community that people can change,” Rankins said. “We don’t just want to get them a job, but we want them to change their behavior.”
It’s something client Jackie Jarrod says changed his life and so many others.
Jarrod says, “When you don’t have no hope you know that’s a bad dark place to be in… Then you go from no hope to you know seeing a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel.”
ACTS has been making an impact on the people who need an extra push and often left forgotten.
“There isn’t one specific thing that has happened. It’s been a conglomeration of so many things. To our dress for success event where men and women who never knew how to dress up for an interview, where they are required to come, just so many community events,” Rankins said.
“You know, people need help, and this is a small place and you can come and get some help and start your way,” Jarrod said.
They only have less than two months to find a new building. If you would like to help, contact them with the information provided below.