New Ministry of Concern director thankful to lead agency that assists many in the community

Photo by Tom Rivers: Jami Allport is the new executive director of the Genesee-Orleans Ministry of Concern. She is shown at GOMOC’s office on third floor of the Albion Visitor’s Center, 121 North Main St.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 16 September 2023 at 5:20 pm

ALBION – Jami Allport is enthusiastic about her new job as director of Genesee-Orleans Ministry of Concern.

Allport, a resident of Albion, took over the reins of the “Agency of Last Resort” after Bob Harker retired earlier this summer.

Allport was born in the Thousand Islands and has lived in Albion since her family moved there when she was in eighth grade. She graduated from Albion High School and Genesee Community College prior to entering the workforce. She is continuing to study online at Southern New Hampshire University for a bachelor’s degree in psychology.

She was working for a non-profit, driving to Lockport and Niagara Falls, when the Ministry of Concern reached out to her and asked to have a conversation about becoming director of their agency.

“The mission of the Ministry of Concern really resonates with me,” Allport said. “I believe serving your community is one of the most important things one can do.”

Allport said she saw the offer as an opportunity to be closer to home and available if her kids needed her during the day.

She has three stepchildren and two children, ranging in ages from 28 to 4. She coaches high school and junior varsity cheerleading.

She is optimistic that the Ministry of Concern is in a great place.

“We have a wonderful staff,” she said. “The drive they have is incredible. They are amazing youth advocates.”

Office Manager Nicole Brady of Medina does a great job working with youth, Allport said.

The Ministry of Concern is offering life skills classes, teaching things such as balancing a checkbook.

The agency has been working with the Albion Police Department, and just finished a very successful backpack drive.

“We provided more than 116 families with school supplies and backpacks,” Allport said.

The Ministry of Concern truly is the “agency of last resort,” she said.

“When everybody else says ‘no,’ we help,” she said. “Whether one is homeless or just out of prison,’ we welcome you with open arms. If your cup is a little short, we will fill it up.”

She added that it takes a lot of courage for someone to ask for help, and GOMOC will do everything possible to make them welcome.

They have started to put up job postings on a board in the waiting room.

“Everyone in this country could be just one instance away from being homeless or hungry,” Allport said. “We are here to give ‘a hand up, not a handout.’”

Allport is also excited to announce that the Ministry of Concern has stepped up to manage the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle drive at Christmas time.

“We are looking for volunteers to ring bells and help with other aspects of the program, such as greeters and emptying donation cans,” she said. “If you can’t give physical gifts, give your time.

She said often high school students need to do community service hours to graduate.

“If you have time to give, see me,” she said. “If you need to do community service, come see me.”