This school has been made possible thanks to Freeport-McMoran who believe in teaching men to fish

In partnership with Freeport-McMoran, the Silver City Gospel Mission’s Self Sufficiency School consists of assessing our clients needs and developing a recovery plan, life-skills training, vocational rehab and on-the-job training classes for men, women, community service workers and student interns who need help in the Silver City area.

Self Sufficiency clients may be homeless, unemployed and looking for work, or interested in additional training or education, or students or other individuals focused on career exploration.

Our Self Sufficiency School provides free training to individuals regardless of their gender, race, ethnicity, religious beliefs, socio-economic status or orientation.

Life Skills Classes

Please see the sidebar for class schedules and times.

Hypothermia Prevention:  Don’t freeze to death out there; recognize the signs, find shelter, get dry and stay warm
(required to receive a homeless survival kit)

How To Use Your Survival Kit:  What equipment is included in your kit and how to use it
  • Survival kit instructions

How To Open A Can Without A Can Opener

Money Management:  

  • How manage your money
  • Safe use of heaters and open flames
  • Proper disposal of ashes
  • What types of heat sources are available?
  • What is carbon monoxide poisoning and how do I prevent it?

Time Management:

  • Why being on time is important
  • Methods to wake up on time
  • How to give yourself time to get places


  • Love of family
  • Making your life easier
  • Increase in living standard
  • Short vs. long-term thinking
  • Making the world a better place
  • How to motivate yourself
  • How to stay motivated when life kicks you

Work Ethic:

  • Love of work and a job well done
  • Why your word is important
  • Why being on time is important
  • Why being honest and reliable is important
  • The value of going the extra mile

Values and Morals:

  • Civilization vs. savagery
  • Acceptable and non-acceptable public behavior
  • How good manners can make a difference in your life
  • Why doing the right thing is better for you

Health and Hygiene:

  • Germs and disease prevention
  • Cleanliness of body and clothes
  • Resources to stay clean
  • Medical resources
  • Dental resources
  • Mental illness resources
  • Drug and alcohol resources
Basic First Aid:
  • What are we trying to do together?
  • Who on the team should do what
  • Grease to make it easier to work together
  • What if someone doesn’t pull their weight?

Problem Solving:

  • Problem solving and personal responsibility
  • Defining the problem
  • Generating alternatives
  • Evaluating and selecting alternatives
  • Implementing solutions

Vocational Rehabilitation
(In partnership with area agencies)

  • GED classes
  • Basic education classes
  • English literacy classes
  • Computer literacy classes
  • Career training classes

On The Job Training And Student Internship Classes

Basic Gardening Techniques:

Using A Greenhouse:

Soil And Fertilizers:

Seed Propagation And Planting:

Salad Greens:




Garden Pests And Diseases:

Market Gardening:


  • Food and kitchen safety
  • Measuring techniques and following recipes
  • Using kitchen tools and equipment
  • Food preparation
  • Cooking techniques
  • Soup kitchen recipes
  • Basic restaurant skills
  • Basic catering skills

Retail Sales:

  • Store or farmers market booth cleanliness and safety
  • Customer service and people skills
  • Sorting, stocking and displaying your merchandise
  • Pricing
  • Using a cash register and money handling
  • Using a ten-key calculator
  • Up-selling and cross-selling
  • Marketing and advertising
  • Salesmanship

Landscaping and Yard Work:

  • Tools and safety
  • Weed removal
  • Trash removal
  • Yard and lawn maintenance
  • Basic landscaping techniques
  • Handyman skills
  • Pricing your services
  • Marketing, advertising and customer service

 Job Placement:

  • Skills assessment
  • Resume, cover letter, and references development
  • Assistance with a job search plan
  •  Career assessment and career goal planning
  • Educational advocacy, including research regarding the best education or training program and assistance with applications and financial aid applications
  • Practice interviewing, asset promotion, and self advocacy skills
  • Post-employment problem solving support


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