By Jim Davis

Once upon a time, there was a man with a dream. He saw how joblessness, homelessness and addiction were ruining the lives of people in East Dayton and causing the community to sink into poverty. He wanted to reach out to these people, to remind them that they had value and help them regain control
of their lives. And he dreamed that by helping them transform their lives, that they in turn could transform the neighborhoods around them and restore the vitality that had had been lost.

That man was Jeff Sorrell. Twenty years ago, he turned that dream into reality. He convinced the leaders of the Vineyard Church to establish an outreach program in East Dayton and the Life Enrichment Center was born. The LEC started out as a food pantry, but its range of services expanded quickly.
Today, the LEC and its partners offer a comprehensive set of services designed to help people regardless of their circumstances. Using innovative approaches like their Pathways to Growth and exchange charity, the LEC is helping their neighbors in East Dayton to transform their lives for the better.

Twenty years is a long time. The staff of the LEC has learned a lot during those years and their strategy scope and services have changed as a result. Over the next few months, this series will highlight the goals, philosophies, and the services offered by the LEC. We’ll talk about some of the things we’ve
learned and how those things have affected our mission. We’ll highlight our partnerships and talk about the importance of our volunteers. And we’ll also talk to some of our neighbors to get their take on how we’re doing. Because at the end of the day, we’re only successful if they are.

“Because Everyone Has Value”

Jim Davis has been a volunteer with the Life Enrichment Center since 2019. His grandparents lived in East Dayton and he has many fond memories of what the area was like when he was growing up.