The Factory Youth Center began in 1994 as a cooperative effort of two local churches to provide a safe and beneficial place for teens to hang out. In 2004, The Factory Youth Center officially became a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization. After 3 part-time directors, The Factory Youth Center hired its first full-time director in 2006. In that year, our current director, Chuck Holt, began to reach out to the families of teens who attend the youth center by offering help and hope to these parents. In 2007, The Factory Youth Center purchased the adjoining property and began renovations on The Factory House that will be used to connect needs and resources in the Pequea Valley Area and thus offer help and hope to those struggling with issues of pain and poverty. In 2009, The Factory began to strategically partner with the local school district, township, businesses, and organizations to offer help and hope to the whole community. In March 2011, The Factory House was opened to serve as our offices and our social services and food bank hub. In September 2012 we officially became a food bank and offered emergency food distribution.
In September 2012, we hired our first full-time social worker and became the social services agency for the Pequea Valley community. In September 2012, the youth center was moved to the old Paradise Elementary School. In January of 2014, The Factory Ministries, along with Grace Point Church and the PV school district formed a movement called The Together Initiative with The Factory as the lead agency of the movement. The Factory Kitchen was opened as a food pantry and a cooking facility in May of 2014. In September 2014 we began to use the old Paradise Elementary School for workshops for adults in the community. With a grant to The Factory and The Together Initiative in July 2015, the old Paradise Elementary School was named The Together Community Center. Remodeling and renovations began at that time to expand our workshops and programs to help those in poverty.
The Factory Ministries exists to empower others to strengthen their community. Because everyone’s journey matters, The Factory reaches out through The Factory House and our youth center with resources to help those who struggle with issues of poverty. By educating the community to understand the various sides of poverty (financial, emotional, mental, spiritual and physical) and by connecting needs with resources The Factory strengthens the community one journey at a time.
We see our mission as not doing everything but motivating and enlisting those with the resources to come alongside and help those with the needs in their community. For the churches we want to be a bridge to the community. For the businesses we want to be a catalyst to help them to give back to their community. For the school district and the townships we want to be a resource and support for addressing issues of poverty in our community.
We value the need to redefine what success is and how it’s best measured. We don’t measure success by attendance, buildings, or cash, but by growth in individuals and families, and by developing relationships and resources.
We value collaborating with others to impact the community. It is not our desire to do everything ourselves but to partner with other entities to establish a combined effort in reaching out to our community.
We value showing mercy to those who find themselves in difficult situations. We will accept people where they are and we will not use judgment or guilt as false motivational tools.
We value gaining a thorough understanding of the issues of poverty, both situational and generational. It is our desire to empathize with and be an advocate for those who struggle with issues of poverty.
We believe that everyone’s journey matters. It matters to God and therefore it matters to us. We exist because of this and not because of what we do. The Why is what drives us to do the What, and shapes the How.
We believe that relationships are our most effective currency. We believe that social capital is what people need most and measure success as to the extent we create relationships with needs and resources.