Who We Are & Serve
We are a faith-based, Not-For-Profit organization in Central Florida helping the HOMELESS learn how to live a responsible life by making good choices and to recover from their hurts, habits and hang ups. New Beginnings can provide a home, food, clothing, professional counseling, job opportunities, hope and encouragement.
How We Are Different
An emergency shelter must, by law, take anyone into the facility. They typically provide food, clothing and a bed. The individual is usually in the facility for only a short time. New Beginnings takes in men, women and children in need. They are carefully screened through police and medical records. Relatively healthy adults who have adequate criminal backgrounds are acceptable. Most importantly, they must agree to our admissions policy. It includes: no alcohol or drugs at any time after moving in; and no sexual reading or activity. The house manager at New Beginnings monitors all activities and medicines to insure that all established policies are adhered to.
- Second Harvest Food Bank – Discounted food for the needy.
- Mid-Florida Homeless Coalition – Provide statistics, goals & oversight.
- Access Florida – Providing childcare assistance for families to get back to work.
- Career Source-
- Good Will-
- Tri HR Solutions-
Our Story: A Hand Up, Not a Hand Out
New Beginnings, a 501c3 not for profit, was founded in June 2007 by concerned community leaders who saw far too few services available in Central Florida for those losing their jobs and homes. There were no job training facilities, very few food pantries, no shelters, no recover programs for those who lost their homes and no housing for the homeless. Today, New Beginnings is providing those services, in many Central Florida communities, with over 1000 volunteers to help meet these needs. New Beginnings has 6 transitional houses to serve 30 homeless people including, single men, moms with children, and families who want to recover from their homeless situation. We teach life skills and job training at our training center. 80% of those in the residential program successfully graduate and leave the program with work and housing. We provide initial work training through two companies that we own and manage; 2econd Life Resale and New Beginnings Thrift Store. We serve over 400 people weekly from our food pantries and our Helping Hands Outreach. 93% of all monies received is used for programs.
- June 2007: New Beginnings launched with 12 volunteers.
- Jan 2008: Opened a home for 6 homeless men with training classes
- 2009: Face of Homeless changed focus to mom and kids
- Sept. 2009: Acquired 16 bed home for moms and kids
- Oct. 2009: Open thrift store in Minneola
- Jan. 2010: Started mentoring program for all residents
- March 2010: Started organized fundraisers
- March 2010: Launched Helping Hands Outreach with 4 churches
- Aug 2012: Opened Thrift Store in 4 Corners area & expanded Helping Hands Outreach into 4Corners Area
- Aug 2013: Opened Learning and Development Center
- July 2013: Acquired home for former homeless families
- Nov 2013: Acquired 10 bed home for single men
- Dec 2013: Opened another home for former homeless families
- Aug 2014: Opened thrift store in Winter Garden
- Dec 2014: Acquired 4-plex apartment for former homeless
- Dec 2014: Acquired 10 acres to build 100+ affordable apartments
- March 2015: Opened new Thrift Store in Clermont
About Our Founder Steve Smith
Steve moved from Ohio to Florida in 2006 to be a full time resident following a 40 year executive role in the banking and insurance industry. He and other community leaders launched New Beginnings in 2007, as Steve had a strong desire to help the local homeless recover from their situation. He is the Executive Director who casts visions for New Beginnings, and also serves as Treasurer for the Board of the Mid Fl Homeless Coalition, and the Lake County Housing Board. He was appointed to the Council of Homelessness by Governor Scott. He has been awarded the Gem of the Hills award by the South Lake Chamber of Commerce in 2010, and the Dream Builders award in 2013. He and his wife, Linda have 4 adult children and 11 grandchildren. He is a member of Real Life Christian Church and the South Lake Chamber of Commerce. Steve believes that God has given each of us time, talents and treasures, and we should share these with the homeless to give a hands up and glorify God.
Our Executive Board
These dedicated individuals make up the New Beginnings Board of Directors. They come from many different organizations and fields of work in an effort to help the cause of New Beginnings.
Co-Founder Linda Smith
Dr. Maurice Marholin