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New Beginnings of Tampa Veterans House Fund

Help us help our veterans, donate to our Veterans House Fund.

New Beginnings of Tampa Veterans House Fund Thanks to a generous donation of land by the APEX Foundation, Inc., New Beginnings of Tampa will build with your help, an additional transitional housing home in Lutz. For over 12 years, New Beginnings of Tampa has been serving the Veterans community in the Tampa Bay area.

The Veterans Administration continues to send us veterans with special needs to care for. We try not to turn any veteran away that our in need of our help. Unfortunately, the housing need for veterans is great and the funding to help them is limited.

We need your financial support to build this home for them. New Beginnings has long been committed to the health, safety and welfare of our veterans. With college accredited staff such as Program Director Kevin Stabile, Case Manager Christina Javete, Nurses Anna Allan ARNP, DNP and Elizabeth Rood RN and other certified members, we hire only those who are committed to the excellent treatment of our veterans.

Our certifications with the Department of Labor and the Veteran’s Administration clearly shows our commitment to veteran’s at its highest level.

Housing veterans with dignity is a vital part of reintroducing them back into society. Our fundraising goal of $550,000, will build a beautiful home for our displaced veterans. The home will house 20 veterans and will include all essential case management and therapeutic services.

We can’t do this alone, please help us help our veterans. Donate today to help us build this transitional housing home.

Your generous tax deductible donation to the New Beginnings Veterans House Fund will enable us to continue to help hundreds of veterans that are in need of a place to live with dignity while they transition back into society.

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Safe Haven program for homeless veterans at New Beginnings of Tampa

New Beginnings ‘weathers the storm’

Safe Haven program for will provide funding to house 10 chronically homeless veterans with mental illness and substance abuse issues in a low-demand, nonintrusive environment at New Beginnings of Tampa.

 

BY JOYCE MCKENZIE
Special Correspondent for The Tampa Tribune
Published: August 19, 2015 Link to Article on TBO.com

Read the rest of this entry »

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Tampa Tribune Letter of the Day: A source of peace in a rough life

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Tampa Tribune Letter of The Day: A source of peace in a rough life

I once enjoyed reading my TBT (Tampa Bay Times) every day on my bus ride to work until one day I read an article that could not have been well researched before being printed, and couldn’t be further from the truth. I couldn’t believe the nerve of this paper to print such trash about my pastor, Pastor Tom Atchison of New Beginnings, a true man of God. My first thoughts were, “Why would anyone want to bash someone in print without doing research, without a thought in the world of what ramifications could derive from this attempt to bring down a homeless recovery program that does nothing but good for people daily?”

Let me tell you a story about a man who was DOA at Tampa General with a 103-degree fever and a bad MRSA staph infection, who was resuscitated and packed in ice, then fell into a coma for seven days to awake to a room full of amazed doctors and nurses looking at me like a lab rat or something.

After a few days of observation, a social worker came to see me and asked where I would go upon release. I was homeless at the time, living in the woods behind a day labor place. I had nothing and nowhere to return to. She gave me Pastor Tom’s card for New Beginnings, and a cab voucher. I arrived with a tank top, flip flops and a pair of cut-offs. Nothing else but a strong desire to find God and thank him for this borrowed time.

To make a long story short, he rained blessings on me through my newfound church family. I’ve since changed my whole view of the world, and I give thanks to my savior Jesus Christ for putting God’s children in my life to show me love.

On several more stays at the center, I ended up working my way onto staff as PT’s (Pastor Tom’s) assistant at the church offices, where I slowly earned the pastor’s trust — to the point where every key to every vehicle the church and program owned was in my office. The church’s checkbooks were in my care, which I thoroughly abused upon my relapse. After $2,000 worth of bad checks to my dope man, the gig was up and my crimes were revealed. If I had done these crimes to an average person, I would still be in prison. But my pastor, a true man of God, just made me confess my sins to my probation officer. My violation got me 22 months in prison — far less than my crimes deserved.

During that time my actions caused my pastor some very embarrassing moments, as the bad checks started coming in, which was no fault of his. This man of God actually took me back in when I got out of prison.

 All this said, I can’t think of one bad thing to say about Pastor Tom and the whole New Beginnings/New Life Pentecostal Church family. This story just scratches the surface of my many stories about this place. Everyone there is human and will make mistakes, but no one there is out to get anyone. They want souls to find God as the source of peace in a rough life, steering these less fortunate people on the path to recovery.

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The truth about New Beginnings of Tampa in the Tampa Tribune

New Beginnings of Tampa articles were on the front page of another newspaper late last year that caused many people to believe that New Beginnings was exploiting the homeless.

A federal investigation for slave trafficking and violation of labor laws was ordered as a result of the newspaper articles.

Click here to read more about it on the Tampa Tribune’s website tbo.com

The Federal investigation is now over. After the United States of America Department of Labor carefully and extensively examined financial records and interviewed several employees and clients, it was concluded that there are NO VIOLATIONS OF RECORD KEEPING OR LABOR LAWS.

Now that New Beginnings has been vindicated we are thankful to a paper such as The Tampa Tribune for showing an unbiased courtesy with the printing of the truth.

New Beginnings has survived but had to cut a lot of services because of the loss of income caused by these bogus articles in the Tampa Bay Times subjectively persuaded public opinion that New Beginnings was guilty until proven innocent.

If you would like to help you may now donate to New Beginnings of Tampa safely and securely online via PayPal. (No PayPal account needed) Or you may contact us directly.

Thank you all for your unwavering support of New Beginnings of Tampa.




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No Violations of Record Keeping or Labor Laws

New Beginnings of Tampa has been helping the disenfranchised for over 15 years and will continue to do so.

 

new-beginnings-of-tampa-federal-investigation-releaseNew Beginnings of Tampa articles were on the front page of the Tampa Bay Times several times in November and December of 2014. The lies and fabrication of stories stirred up many people to believe that New Beginnings was exploiting the homeless.

Missed informed Hillsborough Commissioner Kevin Beckner called for a Federal Investigation for slave trafficking and violation of labor laws.

It seems that The Tampa Bay Times’ main motive was to sell papers and win a Pulitzer for the paper in an effort to further the career of the sensational investigative staff writer Will Hobson.

Their focus was to find stories that sell at the expense of accuracy with no regard for the truth or the harm their lies could cause to innocent people. As a result other news outlets across the country picked up the stories without checking out the validity of the articles from The Tampa Bay Times. Since the stories were newsjacked and published in several newspapers it seemed to lend credibility to the articles being true.

These articles seemed to polarize readers into three main groups:

  1. People who knew about New Beginnings because they had been in the program or knew someone who had been.
    This group of people were angry and livid over the false allegations of the articles. They rallied to New Beginnings to support them during this onslaught of media hype.
  2. People who only knew about New Beginnings through the articles they read in the Times.
    They were livid and angry at New Beginnings because they believed the stories about abuse and exploitation of the destitute and homeless.
  3. People who had been through the Program and were excited from the program because of breaking the rules and/or drug use in the program.
    They used these stories to justify their failures in the program and in their lives. The addicts now had an audience to air their grievances and get back at New Beginnings for putting them out of the program. Many drug addicts contacted the paper to tell them about their alleged mistreatment at New Beginnings.

Now that the dust is settling and the truth is coming out that the stories were not based on fact, but on non-credible people telling ridiculous tales of woe. The few things that were factual were written in a very sensational manner and blown up with the purpose of misguiding the public that a speck of dirt could look like a mountain.

When Commissioner Beckner asked on the front page of The Tampa Bay Times for Federal investigation, he looked like a great crusader of the homeless. The Federal investigation is now over. After the United States of America Department of Labor carefully and extensively examined financial records and interviewed several employees and clients, it was concluded that there are NO VIOLATIONS OF RECORD KEEPING OR LABOR LAWS.

Now that New Beginnings has been vindicated we doubt that the truth will get the same media coverage that the lies did. It is a shame that a newspaper can print such trash in the name of news and get by with it. The damage they do hurts real people. They should have to be accountable for their actions.

New Beginnings of Tampa makes no apologies for requiring some clients to carry a part of their expenses by working. We want to teach them a work ethic and NOT to depend on the government and others to support them. Work is not a dirty word but a great gift given to us by God to have self-worth and to be a part of community. Even in the garden of Eden God instructed Adam to dress and keep the garden.

New Beginnings has survived but had to cut a lot of services because of the loss of income caused by these bogus articles in the Times subjectively persuaded public opinion that New Beginnings was guilty until proven innocent.

We appreciate all who came out to support us through this difficult time. We will continue to rebuild our services as the truth continues to surface. New Beginnings of Tampa has been helping the disenfranchised for over 15 years and will continue to do so. To the staff and volunteers at New Beginnings of Tampa it is more than a job; It is a God mandated calling to help those that need it.

Related:

Good work at New Beginnings is being punished.

A Letter to Commissioner Kevin Beckner

Letter to The Tampa Bay Times – “Strings Attached “by Hobson should have been titled “Florida needs more Ex-biker Gang Leaders”

Pastor Tom Atchison defends program

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We’re not slaves, we choose to work

new-beginnings-of-tampa-stand-for-truth-work-is-not-a-dirty-wordNew Beginnings’ clients working at RayJay again after federal probe

By Mike Salinero | Tribune Staff
Published: December 29, 2014

 

TAMPA — Workers from New Beginnings, a Christian work-therapy program for substance abusers, again are selling concessions at Tampa Bay Buccaneers games — but under different conditions.

The workers lost their jobs when Aramark, the company that provides concessions at Raymond James Stadium, suspended its contract with New Beginnings. The company said in a letter it temporarily was ending the relationship because of media reports that the money workers made at the stadium went to room and board at the nonprofit operation.

At about the same time, Hillsborough County Commissioner Kevin Beckner asked the federal government to investigate whether New Beginnings was exploiting the workers. The Department of Labor recently finished its probe, but the findings have not been released.

Now the New Beginnings residents are back working Bucs games in greater numbers than under the Aramark contract. The men were hired by All Team Staffing, a temporary help agency, to work the Buccaneers’ final home games, against the Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints.

“We got them more work than what they were doing before because we do cleanup afterward in addition to concessions,” said Bill Clark, office manager for All Team Staffing. Clark said he got no complaints from Aramark about hiring the New Beginnings residents.

“They were all well-mannered and very respectful,”
Clark said.

The Rev. Tom Atchison, the Pentecostal preacher who founded New Beginnings, said the arrangement through All Team Staffing is better than the Aramark contract because the workers get paychecks with taxes and Social Security taken out. Aramark pays money directly to charities that send volunteers to work the games.

“The long-term effect of the guys working will be it gets them full-time jobs,” Atchison said. “That remains one of our goals. We’re really happy because we’ve got more work than we ever had.”

Atchison said the men who work the football games will not have to turn their paychecks over to him. But residents who get a full-time job are supposed to pay $150 a week for their room, board and counseling.

If they don’t have a job, they work cleaning or cooking at the organization’s transitional housing in North Tampa or at one of several businesses run by New Beginnings. That’s all part of the program’s work therapy, Atchison said.

It’s about them; it’s about their recovery,” he said. “Guys working is a major part of their recovery. If our guys leave the program with a backpack on and no money in their pocket, their chance of relapsing is pretty great.

new-beginnings-of-tampa-stand-for-truth-the-tampa-times-liesAtchison said All Team Staffing contacted New Beginnings about hiring men for the games because many of them were already trained and certified in food and beverage sales under the Aramark contract and have had criminal background checks. About 40 to 45 New Beginnings residents are slated to work the Outback Bowl at the stadium on New Year’s Day, he said.

The media reports also caused Centerplate, the food and beverage service at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, to suspend its contract with New Beginnings.

But Atchison said he hopes to re-establish that relationship before the Tampa Bay Rays start playing baseball at the stadium in April.

“They just put it on hold,” Atchison said of the Centerplate suspension. “We’re not even concerned about that yet.”

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Is it the goal of the Tampa Bay Times to have homeless on the street again?


Is-it-the-goal-of-the-Tampa-Bay-Times-to-have-homeless-on-the-street-againIn 2010 my life fell apart. To be honest I had been a slight mess for a long time, but in 2010, right when I was getting my life together, it all came tumbling down around me. I can’t blame anyone but myself, of course. I made all those bad decisions. I chose to use drugs, I chose to steal money from my family’s businesses. I did it to myself.

At the end of a 5 or 6 month rollercoaster, I found myself homeless, friendless, outcast by my family, and nowhere to turn. I found New Beginnings on the internet, and thought to myself, “you know, perhaps a spiritually geared program is what I need”. The best part was that they accepted me, without insurance, and without any money in my pocket. I didn’t have a job, or any prospect really of finding one. They said, “Don’t worry about that, just stop using right now, and come in to see us”

To make a long story short, It took me awhile and one more try out there, and then back to New Beginnings, but now I have been clean for 3 years, and have a base of spirituality inside that I never had before. I got that at New Beginnings. I worked hard, both on myself, and for New Beginnings, but that is what I needed! Had I just sat around smoking cigarettes and complaining about how unfair the world is all day, I would not be here right now. I was thankful that I had a way to pay my program fees.

Reading the articles in the Tampa Bay Times, and some of the comments left by people are breaking my heart. It seems like Hobson is on the warpath against Pastor Tom. He doesn’t deserve it, I know he works just as hard or harder running the program and the church than any of the clients do, and most days barely has a free minute. And I have seen with my own eyes the lifestyle that he leads. It is far from Swanky, I’ll tell you that.

The saddest part though that the victims of this debacle will be the 120 or so men and women who depend upon New Beginnings for shelter and guidance. What happens to them? Is it the goal of the Times to have them all on the street again, maybe using drugs, maybe stealing to support their habits, maybe doing worse? I know what I was like when I was out there, and New Beginnings not only saved me, but also the people that I definitely would have harmed had I kept on going the way I was.

In essence without New Beginnings, I most likely would be dead now, and I probably would have done some very bad things in the process of getting there.

I’m begging Will Hobson and the Times to stop thinking about awards, and start thinking about the end game here. How is this going to end? I think instead of making accusations and assumptions we should ALL including Hobson, the NFL, MLB, and The Times, be trying to figure out what we can do to HELP this wonderful little organization.

-Roger B.

 

 
Get help for substance abuse. If you or someone you know has a problem with substance abuse in Tampa and need help. Contact New Beginnings of Tampa and we will help or help get the help needed for substance abuse.

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Good work at New Beginnings is being punished

Times’ crusade against New Beginnings

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Good work is being punished.

Let me see if I have this straight. Pastor Tom Atchison of New Beginnings takes in drug addicts, criminals and sex offenders — basically the unemployable dregs of society whom no other institution will care for — and gives them free room and board, and probably clothing too.

In return he asks the men to pay for their costly care by working a few hours a week at jobs in the community for (at most) pocket money. Nobody is compelled to stay at his homeless shelter and as I understand it nobody is prevented from finding additional employment to earn a few dollars if they so choose. And while in Atchison’s care they are gaining basic job skills, and building a record of steady employment and sobriety that can help them to return to normal society.

From what you have written about Atchison himself, he appears to be an honorable man who definitely is not getting rich out of doing a nasty job that I’m sure no editor at the Tampa Bay Times would want to tackle.

What’s wrong with this picture?

The Times has depicted this man as some sort of latter-day Fagin, exploiting people for personal gain. Thanks to you, Atchison already has lost many of the major sponsors who provided work for these indigents. It’s only a matter of time before his funds and his support dry up and New Beginnings disappears. At which point the drug addicts, criminals and sex offenders will be back sleeping on the streets of Tampa with nothing to do but feed their anti-social pastimes through criminal activity.

Normally I admire the Times for its crusades that are meant to root out the evil in society, and I feel that your past Pulitzers have been justly deserved. But this time you are throwing the baby out with the bath water.

Brandon Jones, Clearwater

Letter to the editor at The Tampa Bay Times published on 12/19/2014

http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/letters/letters-good-work-at-new-beginnings-is-being-punished/2210921

 

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Stand for Truth – Let our words be heard!


New-Beginnings-of-Tampa-website-stand-for-truth-event-dec-27th

LET OUR WORDS BE HEARD

 

If you are a former resident or friend of New Beginnings of Tampa and want to be heard, please join us as we STAND FOR TRUTH.

The STAND FOR TRUTH event will be held Saturday, December 27,2014, from 10:00 a.m. until 12:00 noon, at an undisclosed location. The event is being held in response to all of the lies and distortions that have been perpetrated on the great citizens of the greater Tampa Bay area. For information on the location of the event please call 813-468-8217.

To learn more about New Beginnings of Tampa, Inc., what we do and how we support the local community of the homeless and disenfranchised please visit us at: www.newbeginningsoftampa.

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A Letter to Commissioner Kevin Beckner


New Beginnings of Tampa would like to thank Jim Wujek and the University Square Civic Association for sending a letter of testimony to Hillsborough County commissioner Beckner regarding New Beginnings of Tampa’s good standing in the North Tampa community. (This in regard to Will Hobson and The Tampa Bay Times accusations towards our organization)

We have enjoyed over 15 years of partnership with the University Square Civic Association and we look forward to many more years of being able to share the experiences we have and helping to keep crime down as well as helping those that are disenfranchised.

 

The letter states on December 3, 2014:university-square-civic-assocoation-letter-to-commissioner-beckner

Good Guys

Mr. Beckner,

To our neighborhood, you are one of the “good guys”, and so is Rev. Tom Atchison. We have worked with Rev. Tom and TPD to put drug dealers in jail (call me at 978-1191 to find out more). He and his clients are conspicuous because they are clean, respectful, and helpful to neighborhood residents.

Rev. Tom and his program have a “genuine” feel to them. We suspect that his efforts are not only “clean” but, quite possibly, exemplary.

Jim Wujek, President

 

University Square Civic Association
11101 N. 19th Street
Tampa, Florida 33612
813-978-1191

 

Related Content

“Strings Attached “by Hobson should have been titled “Florida needs more Ex-biker Gang Leaders”

New Beginnings of Tampa instills in people that they are somebody

Pastor Tom Atchison “took personal interest in all the people”

 

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