In 2004, Pilgrim Rest Church began reaching out to men who had been serving time at the Milwaukee Secure Detention Facility. The overwhelming majority of them departed prison with no place to go, no income, no family support, and the same clothes on their back that they were wearing when admitted. Pilgrim Rest churchgoers helped them obtain housing, provided them with clothing and transportation, and offered support and resources in securing employment. Through this ministry, Pilgrim Rest was able to establish a personal relationship and fellowship with each of the original participants – ultimately leading to their transformation.
In 2006, the full, holistic concept of PAM took shape, along with the entity of Nehemiah in order to operate it. On top of offering the aforementioned services to recently incarcerated men, Nehemiah started providing housing as well. Currently, Nehemiah provides a single, private room for each PAM participant, completely furnished with appliances and utilities. PAM participants are encouraged to contribute a third of their income to help support the ministry, which requires a nine-month commitment from them.
The building dedicated to PAM is a four-family building with two bedrooms in each unit. This means that Nehemiah can serve up to eight PAM participants at a time, offering each of them a quiet, nurturing environment which ultimately allows them to reintegrate. Nehemiah is considering adding more rooms in the future to accommodate more men.
Men who are incarcerated hear about PAM through referrals from their parole officers or from PAM volunteers who visit prisons and speak to men months before their release date. Men in prison have spread the word about PAM to others as well.
For more information, contact the Nehemiah, Inc office at 414-444-3179
Click here to download the PAM brochure.