From Curiosity to Achievement Rekindled through Education

Abigail Sims- Evelyn is one of the thousands of indispensable volunteers that share their expertise, dedication, and compassion to prepare our clients for a fulfilling and productive life. The West Contra Costa County School District’s Teacher of the Year Award recipient is a Richmond native and knows firsthand that the Bay Area Rescue Mission (BARM) “Changes Lives for a Brighter Tomorrow.”

Abigail shared “My father was a client of the mission when I was a teenager and received the help he needed to get his life back-on-track.” One of 11 kids, she credits his time at the mission as a stabilizing factor for her family. “BARM also touches future generations with the programs and services it provides in our community. My daughter attended after-school programs at BARM when she was in middle school. It was a blessing that the same kindness still existed that helped our family before.”

“As an educator, I have a responsibility to lead my students on a journey of personal discovery in and outside of the classroom.” Blending formal education with other learning opportunities offered at BARM including financial classes, life skills seminars, resume writing, healthy lifestyle classes, and job training,  Abigail has developed a curriculum that is practical for students at various learning levels. “I challenge them to apply their skills, attributes, and curiosity to become lifelong learners, broaden their personal and critical thinking and develop an appreciation for themselves and their community that represents their new values. Volunteering at BARM is fulfilling! I have the opportunity to give back, to help people get better, in the same way my father and daughter were helped.” Abigail said.

Your support allows us to focus on the fullest development of the person, encouraging individuals to become the very best or finest that they can be and enabling them to experience all they can from life and reach their goals. Success is ours when we are grateful! For meaningful volunteer opportunities contact Marshelle Wilburn at


Daryl Burns
Grants and Foundation Liaison
Bay Area Rescue Mission