In the Beginning
Albany Helping Hands was founded as an non affiliated, independent faith-based 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization in 1998, but it's roots go back to the early 1980's with services and a seasonal shelter provided by Pastor Les Bailey and others.
For fourteen years, starting in 1984, Pastor Bailey ran a shelter from Oak Hill Community Church of God, at 103 Main Street SE in Albany, Oregon, where he was a pastor until retiring in 2014.
Pastor Les Bailey had a gift, people in crisis and need, the homeless and the hungry. People that others would avoid would gravitate to him where personal and spiritual relationships were established.
In 1998, the shelter separated from the church and became Albany Helping Hands, an independent non-denominational, faith-based 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization, an equal opportunity provider and employer.
Also that year the Shelter moved to a leased retail space at the intersection of Santiam Highway (20) and Pacific Boulevard (99E) then in the mid 2000’s the organization moved and purchased the current facilities at 619 SE 9th Avenue.
The local non-denominational ministry has grown from sheltering a few during extreme, harsh winter weather in a small church on Main Street to operating a Homeless Shelter, a three meal a day kitchen, Thrift Store, U-Haul Rental Dealership, Woodlot, and Seasonally five Christmas Tree lots.
The non profit organization is supported primarily by contributions of individuals, businesses, churches and nonprofit organizations.
In January 2018 Pastor John reported in his web blog “… our board seized the opportunity in purchasing three new properties— two adjacent to our main campus at 619 SE Ninth Ave., as well as the former church building at 103 Main Street SE of Pastor Les Bailey, the founder.
This residential building at 103 Main St SE will be renovated and designated for single mothers with children.