Barack Obama said “Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” Kevin F. Adler, founder and CEO of Miracle Messages, along with staff and volunteers, are the change for unhoused individuals by reunifying them with their families, being phone friends, and providing direct cash miracle money. I had the joy, and honor, to speak with Madeline Mazzocchi, Director of Programs and Operations, and Shelly F., a volunteer Miracle Friend and “digital detective” reunion service person.

We are on a mission to end relational poverty on the streets and, in the process, inspire people everywhere to embrace their unhoused neighbors not as problems to be solved, but as people to be loved.” Miracle Messages

Kevin founded Miracle Messages after the death of his beloved Uncle Mark, who struggled with schizophrenia, living on and off the streets for 30 years. When visiting Mark’s grave ten years after his death Kevin thought about all the other people who living on the streets and decided he wanted, and needed, to take action to help them, “to make an immediate and tangible impact in the lives of our neighbors living on-and-off the streets” using people power, storytelling and technology for social good. Since its beginnings in 2014 Miracle Messages has reunited over 800 families, connected over 300 new friendships from all over the globe, and is changing lives with Miracle Money.

Everyone is someone’s somebody.” Miracle Messages

Reunion services was the first program of Miracle Messages. This is where volunteer digital detectives use the information they have from an unhoused person to locate their family. Sometimes they are seeking one family member, sometimes more. When the loved one is found the Miracle Messages volunteer delivers a recorded message to them from their unhoused family member. If the family member is willing, the volunteer facilitates a reconnection. Many times the loved ones say yes to reconnecting. Sometimes they say no. Shelly shared an experience where the unhoused person wanted to reconnect with a sibling and not the parents. The parents were grateful and relieved to know their child was alive, and hopeful that one day they would reconnect. Often Miracle Messages volunteers discover that families had been searching for their unhoused loved one. Tears, relief, gratitude, and joy make these moments magical and heartwarming.

People to be loved.” Miracle Messages

Miracle Friends is where volunteers from all across the world become phone buddies with an unhoused person. Currently there are over three hundred life-changing friendships where weekly phone calls, texting check-ins are part of these special relationships. Strong partnerships exist between other organizations that provide the ability to connect an unhoused person with Miracle Messages so a friend connection can occur. Using google voice or a dialpad phone number makes it so the volunteer is not using their personal cell phone number to make calls or send texts to say hello. The emotional benefits for the unhoused person and the volunteer are great. Caring relationships develop between volunteers and their unhoused friends. Empathy and compassion lead the way in these sacred relationships. 

We meet people where they are at.” Miracle Messages

Miracle Money evolved from volunteers requesting to give financial assistance to their unhoused friends. Miracle Messages began with a pilot program by giving $500.00 a month to fourteen participants with no stipulations on how the cash is spent. What they found was that this money had a significant benefit and impact on the wellbeing of participants. A generous donation of one million dollars has allowed the program to expand to 103 randomly selected individuals being given $750.00 monthly. The University of Southern California is evaluating the program and the impact. One of the first participants to the basic income program donated some of the money to Miracle Messages because she wanted to give back and doing this helped her feel like a normal person. The power of being seen and recognized is changing lives person by person. This consistent financial support is improving the quality of life for each individual.

Everyone has a story.” Miracle Messages

Miracle Messages is thorough and thoughtful in all actions, initiatives, and programs. Volunteers and staff are trained, mentored, and treasured for how they help. It was clear from the conversation with Madeline and Shelly the meaning and honor they experience in work they do and these special relationships with unhoused individuals. The stories and experiences of each unhoused person are tragic and hopeful. Ordinary people are doing extraordinary things that profoundly change lives.  Madeline and Shelly’s lives have been forever impacted by the resiliency, grit, and gratitude of people who have been through so much.

No one should go through homelessness alone – 1-800-MISSYOU.” Miracle Messages

It is with honor we shine the Kindness Champion Spotlight on Miracle Messages. A special non-profit that is forever changing people and lives with love and connection in a world where “people embrace their unhoused neighbors as people to be loved, not problems to be solved and when people are loved their problems are solved.” We thank you for being you and bringing your awesomeness to the world.

For more information about Miracle Messages or to get involved here is their information: