Originally from Mobile, Alabama, Curt surrendered his life to the Lord in 1984. While sharing his new-found faith on the streets of Houston’s infamous Montrose district, Curt found numerous kids who had no home, no hope and no future. For over five years, Youth-Reach operated The Refuge on lower Westheimer in Montrose where the staff fed 75-100 street kids seven nights a week. In November of 1984, Curt took the first kid into his rented condominium. That young man became the first of more than 2,500 kids who have called Youth-Reach their home. Today Youth-Reach Houston has a campus of over 26 acres and Youth-Reach Gulf Coast has a campus of over 81 acres. In 1987, Curt met his wife Shelley and in 1988 they were married. They have seven children and live on-site at Youth-Reach Houston. Today, Curt splits his time between Youth-Reach Houston and Youth-Reach Gulf Coast. He still carries the same passion for troubled kids that drove him back to the streets in 1984.
David and his wife Summer have two daughters: Elle, Sage, and son Benaiah. At the age of 18, after a two-year stint working with young adults, he decided to make it a full time commitment and has been working exclusively with this age group ever since. He studied crisis counseling and business management in college. When asked what drew him to become a part of Youth-Reach Gulf Coast, and what he felt his call to ministry was, he responded with, “ I felt led as it was a departure from the norm of what I had come to see in each program I had worked for previously. The Lord ironed out all of the details and made it clear that it was His will for us to jump in. As to my calling, I desire to see the love of our Heavenly Father embraced by the fatherless.”
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Josiah and his wife Lydia have three daughters: Eden, Ahava, and Meira. Josiah has been involved with many aspects of full-time ministry, and corporate marketing the past 10 years. He received his associates degree in pastoral ministry and foreign communications in 2005. From full-time youth ministry, foreign missions, media production, and marketing he gives of himself completely to the task at hand. They have a burning desire to see young adults transformed by a personal encounter with the love of Jesus , and an intimate relationship with Him. They hope to create a safe haven as they open their home and their hearts to the young men that are embarking on this journey.
Caleb and his wife Leslie have two sons: Isaac and Levi. Caleb has recently joined our team on a part-time basis with assisting administratively as well as general day to day operations. After graduating from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2007 with a degree in Business Marketing, he quickly started working with a local Alabama ministry called WhiteDove Ministries where he has played the role of Administrator, Event Coordinator, Website & Marketing Manager. Caleb has been a long time partner and friend to Youth-Reach Gulf Coast, but we are now happy to have him as a part of our family. When asked why he wanted to join Youth-Reach, Caleb replied, “For many years I have been looking in from the outside, admiring the work of Youth-Reach. I have always had an enormous amount of respect for the staff and what they have humbly sacrificed to do this great work. I am honored to call these folks my friends. And I am privileged to have the opportunity to serve in this small way.”
Raised in eastern North Carolina, Tony met his bride to be, Cindy, while attending Spring Arbor College in Michigan. They were married in 1984. They have 5 children TJ, Summer, Amber, Josiah, and Mary. Tony has always had a passion for woodworking and gardening. He has worked over the years as a technician, electrician, and maintenance mechanic. Cindy has a degree in education but chose to be a stay at home mom and homeschool her children. Her passions are gardening, livestock, and sewing. Before coming to Youth-Reach they lived off grid in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina. The longing to share his skills with young men grew in Tony’s heart as well as the desire to be used for whatever the Lord has for him. His prayer for the youth is this…Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Kristina Strickland began serving the Lord at the age 14 when she joined the Crosswalk Singers at her church. This group ministered in prisons and performed in churches in many California cities up and down the coast. She later served as a lay pastor for five years in San Jose, California, entered divinity school and subsequently obtained her degree. She was ordained and licensed as a minister in 2009 and spent time on the mission field before God brought her to Alabama. Kristina worked as the director of operations for Entrusted Marketing and Design as well as an enrollment counselor for the University of Phoenix. She first contacted the Youth-Reach office in regards to enrolling a young man in the program. When she arrived at the YRGC campus, God placed in her heart a desire to serve this ministry.
Jackson Bentley is a 2016 graduate of Youth-Reach Gulf Coast. After running from God for many years, he found himself in a place of true brokenness and finally surrendered to the Lord. He believes that Youth-Reach Gulf Coast forever changed the course of his life and feels blessed to serve the community as a staff member now.