DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - After being in and out of jail in New Jersey - Alan Mumford moved to Dothan to get away from his troubles.
He graduated from The Ark's transitional program three years ago, and understands the program's impact.
He used one word to describe what The Ark has done for him, “blessed, I feel blessed."
Now as a team leader at The Ark, Mumford says, "I’m back in school, I’m trying to get my GED, and I’m trying to go to college. I have opportunities here for me, and I’ve just learned a lot of abilities in me that I didn’t know I had.”
"I’m not the same person I was when I got here," said Alan.
Since the program began - 50 men have graduated from the intense program.
But in just three months they'll open the program to women.
Jeffrey Peacock, Executive Director of The Ark, explained, "We'll have The Ark's Women’s Center, and we'll be able to house up to 23 women, and provide this transformational opportunity for them as well.”
The new facility plans to open in the Fall - sooner than expected.
"This women’s center was really just dropped in our lap we're about eighteen months ahead of schedule with the starting of this facility we were blessed with the building,” said Peacock.
Although the timing wasn’t quite what they were expecting -- members of The Ark say it’s necessary.
Cindy Smith has been at The Ark since its very beginning, but says working with women is different.
"I go to the Dale County Jail every Monday with two other ladies, where I minister to the women there and I’ve seen that there’s nothing for them usually when they get out of jail, so they go right back into what brought them to jail" said Smith.
She says, "The biggest problem with most of these young women is they have a bad outlook on their life, and they think they're worthless. They don’t have anything to offer this life, so they turn to drugs or alcohol or whatever."
Their mission at The Ark is to help the broken through ministry, to bring hope back into the lives of those who believe there isn’t any left.
Cindy Smith explained, "I’ve been broken, and I know what it’s like to be broken and to think that you're not worth nothing - and then...to find out that you are worth something because God loves you more than you could ever love yourself."
The Ark does need help with funding as they are planning to open ahead of schedule.
The proposed date is August 1st.
If you would like to donate or volunteer with The Ark – you can visit their website at Thearkdothan.org.
Or stop by their facility located at 475 W. Main St in Dothan.