Perhaps you’ve heard that Crisis Ministries is changing its name. This is big news in my world, maybe not in yours. In your world, big news is an earthquake that levels a city of seven million people. In my world, we stop chewing our food when our Facebook post prompts seven likes. My world is sad and pathetic.
But this isn’t about me; it’s about the organization formerly known as Crisis Ministries, henceforth to be known as One-Eighty Place.
That’s One-Eighty as in turning completely in the other direction, which is the work of this benighted organization. They so very long ago transcended “crisis.” Far beyond a homeless shelter, One-Eighty Place (I’m trying it out) is where people go to get their life together with a host of services that move them up and out.
And “Ministries,” well, that’s less what the organization does and more what drives volunteers to them. Some people are impelled by Ministry to offer their services to those in need. Others by ministry – with a small “m.” As Habitat for Humanity founder Millard Fuller used to say, it’s all about the theology of the hammer.
Being the marketing virtuoso that you are, you know that the good folks on upper Meeting didn’t just make up the name, vote on it, and reveal it to all of us the following week. It took two weeks.
Actually, they’ve been hacking at this particular bush for 18 months, and they recruited the electric minds of Hook to help them conceive an appropriate moniker. You don’t just thumb through a baby name book for this.
In fact, One-Eighty Place (or One80 Place — they seem to be using both) CEO Stacey Denaux says they couldn’t find another organization anywhere in the country that could serve as a role model. No one had previously ditched its rescue mission-ish name for The Turnaround Center or Start Over House or Success Village or whatever. So Charleston’s own will have to serve as everyone else’s role model.
And as models go, va-voom, in my humble opinion. Just contemplate the marketing possibilities. Better yet, leave it to the Hookers, who are flexing their double-jointed creative muscles to get 540’s worth of bounce out of One-Eighty.
I’m looking forward to seeing the great work of One-Eighty Place get its due. Because I’d like to resume chewing my food…