I grew up in a Christian home in Newcastle, Ontario. In September of 2009 I moved to North Bay in order to attend Nipissing University. At that time I wanted to be a Kindergarten teacher, but as there weren’t many teaching jobs I decided to take Business Administration along with teaching so that business could be my back up plan. Little did I know that God had a different plan for my life. Throughout my four years in University I fell in love with North Bay and the people here. In July of 2012, the summer between my third and fourth year, I felt God calling me to open a Christian homeless shelter in North Bay. Although I knew this was what God wanted me to do with my life I didn’t actually start working on it until the summer of 2013.Through this shelter we want to demonstrate the life changing power of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that this job won’t always be easy, but I am so excited to see what God has planned for the city of North Bay.
For more of Nicole's story Click Here.
Board of Directors
Chris Hermann brings many years of leadership experience in business, community and ministry to the boardroom table. He strives for excellence, creativity and collaboration in leadership, organizational management and administration while promoting continuous learning and development growth for himself, leadership teams and organizations.
No stranger to personal crisis and spiritual brokenness, Chris’s search for meaning, wholeness and healing through a real relationship with God began at age seven. That search has continued through to the present day with significant personal God encounters that have developed into a real and vibrant relationship with Jesus Christ his Saviour, Friend and Healer.
“I’ve never regretted following God. I have however regretted running away from Him. I’m still baffled by how many times I’ve done that. What’s so amazing is that He has chased me down because of His outrageous love for me. Not just once or twice! He’s never given up on me. I know Jesus Christ as the God of the second … third and fourth chance. He has shown me that His faithfulness and loving kindness are far beyond even the best the world has to offer. I love His love for the broken, marginalized and oppressed. It’s because of this that my heart beats in concert with His for the mission of Hope Awaits Ministries in our community.”
“Share your food with the hungry, and give shelter to the homeless. Give clothes to those who need them … and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.” Isaiah 58:7p&10p NLT*
*Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation.
Here’s a little bit about me. I’m a husband, dad of three and 4 grandkids (that number hopefully increases as time goes on!). I enjoy good laughs with family and friends, participating in fun activities as well as an intimate conversation. To celebrate someones joys and to walk with them in grief is my paradigm swing. My desire is to listen more and speak less. To do more while being seen less.
Much of who I’ve become has been developed through a very difficult childhood. God is the depth of my passion. Without Jesus forgiving me of my sins, I would live an exhausted life of self-fulfillment. I liken myself a bit to Tevye from Fiddler on the Roof. - To “chat” with God in the simplest and the hardest conversations. I want to walk and talk with him as Adam and Abraham did.
I was born in Guyana. When I came to Canada I was in awe at the beauty of every season. But occasionally, I have this chat with God and ask him to make summer one month longer and winter one month shorter. Are you joining me in that conversation prayer with God? :)
I hope my life allows people to not hold me in any esteem, but only to see the smallest glimpse of God’s Holy Spirit revealed within me.
I enjoy a bike ride, a run, to be either in or on the water, tinker with stuff, read a cool book or do some woodworking. I write a bit when God distracts me with something special and I get to ponder on what he shows me.
Since helping with the initial opening of Hope Awaits and then becoming a volunteer client support worker in 2018, I’ve been able to fulfill a call Jesus put on my heart so many years ago - to be a man in the gap. My career was a means to this end. It allowed me to get here. I learned to wait. My passion grew. Hope Awaits Ministries gives me the opportunity to be an outflow of Jesus’ passion for the lost, the weak, those in despair.
I’m so thankful to work for God with a team that’s supportive of me and loves God’s ministry so much. Hope truly does await everyone.
I am very pleased to be part of the Hope Awaits team and would like to share a little of who I am and why I believe God has called me to share in this ministry as the Hope Awaits Treasurer.
I would like to start by declaring who I am in my Heavenly Father’s eyes. I am a child of God and a follower of Jesus Christ who is my Lord and Savior.
I am blessed to be the wife of my wonderful husband, Ronald Vanier. I am a mother, a stepmother and a grandmother of seven. I was born and raised in North Bay and I am the second oldest daughter of Allen and Joyce Kerr. I have two sisters and two brothers and a large extended family. Most continue to live in the North Bay area.
I am thankful that as children, my parents took us to church every week at Bethel Gospel Chapel and to Camp Aush-Bik-Koong Bible Camp each summer. I came to understand my need for a Savior at a very young age and remember kneeling in my Sunday school class at about the age of seven and giving my heart to Jesus.
During my later teen and early adult years, I walked away from God thinking that I didn’t need Him and could direct my own life. How foolish I was! Those were some of the most difficult years of my life. The many godless decisions I made during that period of my life continued to impact me emotionally and spiritually for many years. Sadly my sin not only affected me but my entire family. The great news for me, and for all of us, is that our God is a forgiving God who restores us when we turn back to Him. He stands firm on His promise to never leave us or forsake us, even when we are not being obedient to Him.
As I look back over my life, I can see the hand of God at work like lighted sign posts along a path. I can see where He healed me, protected me, taught and encouraged me, but most importantly He drew me back to Himself and into a deeper relationship with him day by day. What a great God we serve. As I ponder His goodness I can’t help but be in awe and forever thankful.
I did not have the opportunity to go College or University. Instead, I started to work in the banking industry immediately upon graduating from high school. I have had several career opportunities over the years but always went back to banking and bookkeeping.
For almost 20 years, I had the privilege of using my financial and book keeping skills to serve as the Treasurer at South Shore Missionary Church. I have decided not only to follow Jesus but to serve Him as He calls me.
Today, I am retired from the secular work world but continue to help with the bookkeeping responsibilities at my church. In addition, I am a Deaconess, Sunday school teacher and I also lead a weekly ladies bible study.
In 2019 my husband Ron and I were part of the team who planned and hosted the “Homeless Night Challenge” fundraiser for Hope Awaits. It was during that time that God began to speak to me about becoming more involved in Hope Awaits Ministries. So when I was approached to consider being part of the Hope Awaits Board, I gave it prayerful consideration. It did not take long for God to confirm that this was what He had gifted me for and indeed where he wanted me to serve.
It gives me great joy to be part of the ministry, to provide prayer support for the leadership team, clients and the ministry in general. My greatest joy comes from hearing of how Christ is using this ministry to save and restore hope to the lives of homeless men in the North Bay area.
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power forever and ever.
~ 1 Peter 4:10-11