The mission of Encompass Ministries is to help individuals and families re-establish stability and self-reliance by offering a variety of programs including immediate food assistance, employment strategies, and life skills through hands-on support and ongoing training in order to have a community where everyone has the tools to achieve stability and no one goes to bed hungry.
Hello, my name is Lynne Saunders, Founder and Executive Director of Encompass Ministries. Welcome!
Encompass Ministries began in 1998 as Papa’s Pantry, Inc. After a mission trip to India, the Lord immediately began working to bring forth a ministry that helped people at their deepest point of need. At the earliest moments, it was about addressing “food insecurity,” otherwise known as “hunger.”
Early on, food clients came through word of mouth. Friends, colleagues, and people from church would refer people for help. Families’ stories were heartbreaking, yet courageous, all at the same time.
The ministry quickly escalated to that of helping with deeper needs. If people needed jobs or didn’t understand household economics, I would take time out to address those issues. Amazingly, after time, they no longer needed help!
In 2003 I left corporate America to fulfill a lifetime calling. In 2004 our first “open to the public” location was housed in Canton, but we outgrew that space within 10 months. In 2005, we landed at our current home in Woodstock.
Early on, “The Master’s Training Center” was established to meet the “stability training’ needs in a classroom setting, rather than the individual training established while on the home delivery system. Since then thousands of families have worked hard and earned financial freedom and become viable community citizens, off government assistance!
Over the years, we have taken our stability training offsite to other programs that work with people to get on their feet… domestic violence centers, substance abuse recovery sites, at-risk youth programs, and transitional housing programs. Why wait for people/individuals to walk through our doors to give lifesaving, fundamental stability training?
As we continued to expand our reach and tell our story, we realized that the organization’s name of Papa’s Pantry did not “encompass” all that we did. So, in 2019, we changed our legal name to Encompass Ministries.
Today, Encompass Ministries’ reach is far and wide. Certainly, our core, in-house programs go on, day to day, week to week, month by month. When it comes to the offsite partnered programs, Encompass has become a full-blown training and distribution (food) center. We are feeding and training thousands of people every year.
Thank you for your interest in our ministry. Please feel free to contact our office if you have any additional questions. We are happy to schedule meetings and tours with anyone, or any potential partnered organization. Just call us. When it comes to meeting the needs within our communities, we are all in this together!
Thank you and God Bless,
Founder and Executive Director
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