Rescue, recover and restore has been the mission of the Rockford Rescue Mission since it started 53 years ago. A lot of people have gone in and out of those doors but one woman has been it's constant, Director Sherry Pitney.
This year marks Pitney's 35th year at the mission and in that time she has given hope to everyone who has walked in the door.
Take a look inside of Pitney's office at the Rescue Mission and you will see her mission. 'Hope' is labeled all around the walls in pictures, the outside of frames and largely painted on the back of her wall. It has been the theme of her time at the Rockford Rescue Mission. Pitney said, "There's always the opportunity for a better day. If God woke you up this morning, then God has a plan for you."
During her 35 years at the mission, Pitney has seen large growth in the organization. Pitney said, "I started when there were only 6 people on staff, now there's 100."
Since she has been there they have welcomed a new facility on W. State Street. In addition, they have started Restoration Cafe and numerous other programs that have helped people at their lowest points in life.
"No one in elementary school think's they're going to end up at a rescue mission," said Pitney. "To come here, there's deep despair that comes before that."
She has dedicated her life to restoring lives through hope.
"Everybody is important. Everybody has value,"said Pitney."We just hope to help them see their lives in a different light as a result of walking in these doors."