Alan Thornton is helping to champion a movement of positive change that has started within faith-based homeless services. Alan is Chief Executive Officer of the Rescue Mission Alliance of Syracuse, a multi-regional mission that serves thousands of individuals a year with programs in Syracuse, Auburn, Binghamton and Ithaca.
Under his leadership, the organization is one of the first missions to rapidly expand new progressive housing models and is placing more than 700 people a year into permanent housing. Alan has 21 years of experience in the nonprofit sector and is in the process of acquiring an MBA from Syracuse University.
Changing Lives in Syracuse
At the Rescue Mission, a hot meal or a warm bed can be the first step to life change. Our Food Service Center provides three free meals a day to anyone in need. Our emergency shelter offers 183 beds for men and women in eight separate dormitories. Our day center is a safe place to come in from the elements, use the phone or internet, and connect with a range of services.
Beyond meeting basic needs for food, clothing or shelter, Rescue Mission case managers help our guests to develop a plan to leave homelessness and hunger behind. As part of this effort, the Rescue Mission operates an adult home for supportive living as well as affordable permanent housing.
More Than a Century of Service to Others
The Rescue Mission was founded in Syracuse in 1887, and has a long history of serving those in need. While our programs have evolved over the decades, our values of faith, hope and love form the foundation of our service.
When long-time executive director Clarence Jordan came to work at the Mission in 1959, the organization consisted of a single lodging house. Under his leadership, the Rescue Mission grew to include numerous programs, including a social enterprise system that employs some who come through our programs.
The Rescue Mission’s commitment to meeting community needs continues. In October 2015, we opened our largest building project to date, the $7.2 million Alice C. Barber Day Center and Kiesewetter Emergency Shelter in Syracuse. This 24-hour facility expands our capacity and enables the Rescue Mission to provide emergency shelter to women for the first time in our history.
In light of a tremendous need for permanent affordable housing, the Rescue Mission will soon launch a $16.7 million renovation to create 128 permanent housing units on our Syracuse campus.