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Thursday, December 25, 2008

Inspired by Unity and the Desire to Serve: Muslims and Christians Provide Hope in South Phoenix

By Starla Muhammad

The uphill journey in providing a clean and safe haven for those struggling and recovering from substance abuse while bettering their lives came to fruition Saturday, December 13th in Phoenix with the opening and dedication of Trent House, a Level 4 transitional and recovery home on the city’s south side. Named in honor of Trent Louis Hutchison, a young brother who recently lost his battle with drugs addiction and died of an accidental overdose, Trent House is the “brainchild” of The Perfect Image (TPI) Independent Living Facilities, a non-profit organization. As a Level 4 facility, Trent House can provide housing and programs for those dealing with alcohol and drug abuse, homelessness and women with children who are victims of domestic abuse.
Owned and operated by Chris and Catherine Muhammad of Phoenix, TPI was birthed from the couples desire to make lives better for those less fortunate. Two years ago they began acquiring and rehabbing houses with the goal of converting them into homes for men, women and children.
Pastor Hurley V. Grissom, Jr., the onsite live-in director and counselor for Trent House is like the Muhammad’s, in that he also sees a need for effective substance abuse programs and transitional housing for the city’s south side. Mr. Hutchison was a member of Pastor Hurley’s congregation. Pastor Hurley’s church provides a substance abuse recovery program and after an introduction to the Muhammad’s through a mutual contact, Pastor Grissom began referring men and women to TPI for placement.
Although being of different religions, Pastor Grissom and the Muhammad’s share a common bond of love for those who just need a helping hand. “We are reaching out to make things happen, as we are taught by the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan…..we want to go out and help our people”, shares Mr. Muhammad. “I found there was no problem with the crossing of religious lines, so that excited me, and that was a plus in (us) moving forward”, added Pastor Grissom.
Muslim and Christian community leaders attended the Trent House dedication. Those in attendance included Rev. Emanno Willis, Bro. Patrick Muhammad, student Minister of Muhammad Mosque #32, Sister Karen Rahman Muhammad, daughter of Nation of Islam pioneers Zarifah Aquil Muhammad and Abdul Rahman Muhammad, Mother Evelyn Muhammad, wife of The Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad, Rev. Grissom and Damon Hutchison, the brother of Trent Hutchison. The Hutchison Family presented TPI a donation of $3000 in honor of Trent’s memory. “The entire Hutchison family hopes those who will come here (Trent House) will be helped in their time of need” he told the audience.
Trent House is the first home opened by TPI and is for men in recovery. Pastor Grissom, along with Mr. Muhammad and others, offer counseling, self-development and self-improvement courses to the men of Trent House. In an effort to build self-esteem and responsibility while in recovery, the residents do share in household expenses such as rent, as well as household duties. A home for women and a home for women with children are currently in development. For more information about TPI, please contact 602-486-9375 or theperfectimage1@cox.net.

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