Charlotte Rescue Mission is transforming lives in the name of Christ by serving people struggling with addiction, poverty, or hopelessness with the goal of returning them to society as productive, self-sufficient citizens.
Charlotte Rescue Mission will be recognized as a leader in providing Christian-based residential recovery programs that help people struggling with the disease of addiction achieve long-term sobriety, find employment and stable housing, and restore and build healthy relationships.
Founded in 1938, the Charlotte Rescue Mission has a long history of reaching out to the homeless and those battling addictions. Over the years, the Mission has been located in several different uptown Charlotte buildings and had several different names, but our commitment to serving the homeless and sharing the gospel of Christ has never changed.
Many people who came to the Mission for help during these early years were struggling with addiction. In 1990, the Mission made a commitment to hire a Christian staff trained in professional substance abuse recovery services. With this, Charlotte Rescue Mission launched a 90-day residential program empowering individuals to move beyond cycles of homelessness and addiction to become productive citizens in the community. This program is known as Rebound and has helped thousands of men over the years. In 2016, this program grew to become a 120-day program.
Rebound served men struggling with addiction and homelessness, but, despite a staggering community need, there was no similar program for women. In 1992 Charlotte Rescue Mission launched the Dove’s Nest program. Similar to Rebound, Dove’s Nest provides comprehensive addiction recovery services for women.
In 1995, Rebound men’s Halfway House opened its doors. The Halfway House provides further opportunities for Rebound graduates to maintain long-term sobriety as they transition out of dependency on community programs and transition into self-sufficiency.
In 2008, Dove’s Nest Capital Campaign was launched to expand Dove’s Nest women’s addiction recovery program from a 12-bed facility to a 120-bed facility. For the first time in our history, the Mission is now able to serve children as well as their mothers, with beds for 90 women and 30 of their children. Doors of this new facility opened in July, 2012.
Charlotte Rescue Mission accepts the American Medical Association’s definition of alcoholism as:
“…an illness that is characterized by significant impairment in the emotional, psychological, spiritual, physical and social areas that is directly associated with the persistent and excessive use of alcohol. Impairment may involve psychological or social dysfunction. Alcoholism also is manifested as a type of drug dependence of pathological extant and pattern, which ordinarily interferes seriously with the patient’s mental and physical health and his adaptation to his environment.”
Concerning the spiritual implications of alcoholism, we believe it has roots in alienation from God and the violation of conscience. We believe that God’s power is able to deliver individuals from the compulsion to drink, and to set them free from the emotional, psychological, spiritual, physical and social consequences of an alcoholic lifestyle.
Although an individual may be delivered from the compulsion to drink or drug (and is no longer a “drunkard” in the spiritual sense), Charlotte Rescue Mission recognizes that he is still an alcoholic or drug addict in the therapeutic sense. We believe the continued use of alcohol or other drugs results in changes in the emotions, mind, and body that do not disappear upon an alcoholic’s salvation. On a physiological level, he will always be “sensitized” to alcohol. Total abstinence, therefore, is a must; any use of alcohol can “activate” the chemical mechanisms of addiction leading to compulsive drinking and behavior. We believe this physical aspect of the disease of alcoholism will remain with the recovering alcoholic until he is glorified and receives his new body from the Lord.
We believe that professional counseling and therapy is necessary to help individuals to overcome the consequences of alcoholism and other drug addiction. Also, we recognize that alcoholism and other drug addictions is a “family illness”, and believe that all of the members of the alcoholic’s family need to be a part of the recovery process by receiving specialized help. We accept the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous as a reliable and orderly approach to recovery from alcoholism. We identify the higher power as the person and work of Jesus Christ. We also believe there are some very specific scriptural principles that must be applied to such an individual to assist him in a victorious and fruitful Christian walk.
Many of the attitudes, temptations, feelings, and patterns of thought resulting from the alcoholic’s lifestyle are not immediately removed upon an alcoholic’s rebirth. We believe these things constitute elements of this “sinful nature”, or “flesh”, that he will struggle with as long as he remains in this world. Therefore, through a process of discipleship, he must “transform by the renewing of his mind”. (Romans 12:2) and must learn to “walk in the Spirit that he might not fulfill the desires of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16)