The men, women, and families who walk through the doors of Volunteers of America Ohio & Indiana for the first time seeking help often think there is no hope left for them.
The staff who welcome these men and women to VOA programs do so with arms wide open – ready to help carry their burdens, lighten their load, and remind them that there is always hope. They are people with a passion for uplifting others to help them rebuild their lives.
Khamisi Jordan is one of those passionate people.
Khamisi is a Community Case Manager at one of our VOA Veterans Resource Centers and if you know him personally, you know his path in life has always put him exactly where he needed to be.
“It’s okay to ask for help – we’ve all had a point in life where we’ve been down, we’ve had a struggle, a hardship, or a trial. Whatever it is – you’re not defined by just that season of what you’re going through. It’s how you adapt and overcome.”
From an early age, Khamisi’s parents taught him the importance of loving and serving others. As he began his journey into adult life after high school, he considered joining the military but ultimately decided he wanted to run track in college. During his first year, some would likely say God had other plans for his life that fed his passion for helping others.
By happenstance, Khamisi reconnected with a friend in the Marines at school who shared what life in the military was really like. Khamisi met with a recruiter the next day and enlisted enthusiastically, loving the appeal of seeing the world and serving his country.
Once again, God had other plans for his life.
“I always tell people I had a plan [while enlisted] to go to Japan and then to North Carolina afterwards so I could be closer to family in Cleveland, but God had different plans for me, and he stationed me in Hawaii. That’s where I became a born-again Christian.”
While serving in Hawaii, Khamisi found joy in many different ministry opportunities with his local church.
After four years in the military and an honorable discharge, Khamisi returned home to Cleveland. He began looking for a church he could get involved with in his hometown, and found one with a strong family and faith connection, similar to his experience in Hawaii.
Church leadership immediately recognized the passion and talent Khamisi possessed, and plugged him in to their ministry. It was this path that led Khamisi to become a licensed minister in 2017, and now, several years later, he is working toward becoming an ordained minister in 2022.
With all of this in mind, it’s easy to understand why Khamisi cares so deeply about his work at the VOA Veterans Resource Center. He’s a person who believes whole-heartedly in the ministry of service that he brings to work each day.
Khamisi’s experience as a veteran and a minister not only means he can better relate to the veterans he serves, it also informs the mentality he brings to work with him each day.
“I make sure I do everything I can to serve them [veterans]. But I have to take care of myself too, if I’m not functioning correctly, I can’t serve veterans in the way they need. It’s like the saying goes, if the vessel is clean, whatever you’re pouring into the person is clean. But if the vessel is dirty or polluted, so will be the service. I want veterans to leave here feeling enlightened, encouraged, and blessed.”
Khamisi is truly a champion for veterans, helping them through their entire journey with Volunteers of America. It starts with a meet and greet and from there, he helps them get job interviews, preps them with mock interviews, takes them to get interview clothing, supports them with transportation, and connects them with any other programs and services they may need.
“It takes a lot of love and patience. Veterans are not “one size fits all” – there are different age groups, ethnicities, experiences, and more, to take into account when giving them the support they need.”
At Volunteers of America, Khamisi helps veterans find hope again and we are proud to have him as part of our community of hope.