Non-profit teams up with bakery to house and employ homeless women

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GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan (WXMI ) — A West Michigan non-profit is working to better the lives of homeless women.

Dégagé Ministries has partnered with Paul’s Mom’s Kitchen in Grand Rapids to offer job training.

There’s a buzz in the kitchen as a half-dozen different cookies are being freshly baked.

“They are kind of unique flavors we’ve developed all of the recipes ourselves,” said Cindy Knape, founder of Paul’s Mom’s Cookies.

It’s a kitchen of love, hope and inspiration.

“It just impacts them on every level when they can come into an environment where they are valued for each gift that they bring and the moms do a fabulous job of incorporating everybody into that environment,” said Marge Palmerlee, executive director of Dégagé Ministries.

Founders Cindy Knape and Chris Mason love to bake and years ago created this organization to have their delicious cookies support homeless women secure housing and re-enter the workforce.

“We’ve been doing this for six years and we literally leave every week going wasn’t that wonderful? We just feel so blessed that we’ve been able to been apart of it,” Knape said.

To be a part of something much bigger than just baking but also proving a second chance at a brighter future, one that builds confidence and self worth.

“Well after training and being hired my housing came in and so now I have a job and a place to live and I’m happy about that,” said Susan Schnur, who is in her first year of the program.

The future looks sweet for Paul’s Mom’s Cookies as they plan to expand in the coming years but they will never lose sight of why they started.

“One of our biggest goals is to offer more women the opportunity to be able to work here after they get through the program I think Chris would agree that’s our number one goal,” said Knape.

It’s this admirable cause that makes paul’s mom’s cookies taste so good!

“I like em all I think they are all great. All natural ingredients and fresh! Freshly cooked and served you can’t beat that,” Schnur said.

If you would like to support Paul’s Mom’s cookies you can find them at a few local grocery stores such as Forest Hills Foods and Bridge Street Market or shop at their online store.

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