We provide a new model of Christian higher education for those who were formerly addicted, homeless or in prison, enabling these “high-risk” students to get jobs and lead transformed lives. We call this our Wounded Healers program, which includes about 25% of City Vision students.
Each year thousands of individuals complete Christian addiction recovery programs, prison re-entry programs or job readiness programs for the homeless, but many still struggle to find a job. City Vision provides a national program partnering with many of these ministries so they can help their clients secure and maintain employment. We partner with ministries serving high-risk clients so they can develop career tracks for retail, food services, addiction counseling, nonprofit management and ministry jobs. While these ministries can partner in many ways for career training, we have found for most organizations, City Vision provides a unique offering that significantly improves job outcomes in these fields.
Traditional Christian higher education is not very affordable or accessible to these high-risk students. City Vision provides the strengths of Christian higher education with the affordability and accessibility of a community college to effectively serve high-risk students. By doing this, we enable these students to become wounded healers that transform the pain of their past. That way, they can help others coming from similar circumstances.
We teach these wounded healers that God never wastes a painful experience, and often the best addiction counselors are those who have recovered from addiction themselves. Those who graduate from our Addiction Counseling program typically get a job counseling hundreds of individuals where they can truly live out the parable of the sower and the seed, producing a crop of “a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.” (Matt.13:8)
After more than 20 years of working with addiction recovery programs, we have found that the most difficult part is not getting someone sober through a treatment program, but helping them stay sober after the program. Each year, thousands of individuals successfully complete Christian addiction recovery programs and establish their sobriety, but still struggle to find a job. Those that can’t find jobs often are drawn back into the cycle of addiction. Many of these people not only want to maintain their own sobriety, but have a passion for helping others out of addiction. However, they can’t afford the tuition of most Christian addiction counseling degrees, so the field remains closed to them.
City Vision’s Bachelor’s in Addiction Counseling is the most affordable online Christian degree in the field, at about half the tuition of other Christian schools. In order to make it even more accessible, it was designed with the needs of recent Christian recovery program graduates in mind. We offer many Life Skills oriented courses that help our Wounded Healers work through their own struggles as well as becoming equipped to minister to others.