Quick Facts About the JOSHUA Program

The JOSHUA program is a ministry of Urban Mission Ministries (www.urbanmission.org), an ecumenical Christian social service agency founded by the United Methodist Church in 1959 in Steubenville, OH.

The Urban Mission exists to serve as a concrete witness of Jesus by serving the needs of the poor and disadvantaged.

It does this by:

–       Supplying groceries and meals for all who do not have sufficient or adequate food;

–       Providing temporary shelter for homeless families through the Hutton House;

–       Providing leadership development and programming in and for the African American community through the Neighborhood Community Development Center;

–       Improving the housing of low-income households through the JOSHUA program;

–       Providing spiritual care through weekly bible studies and Mission Rejoice worship services.


The JOSHUA (Journeys of Service Helping Upper Appalachia) Program was established in the summer of 1990 as a work mission program sponsored by the Urban Mission.

It began as a dream of several concerned pastors, professors, and community members who observed the deteriorating conditions of houses and property in the Steubenville area.  Together they established an experience for youth and adults, who would come from various parts of the country to help make a difference in the living conditions of low income community members.

What developed was the ministry of JOSHUA.  Numerous adult and youth teams from all over the country have come to participate in JOSHUA over the years. Each team brings their own contribution of money, equipment, materials, and talents to work on their assigned projects.

Homes have been scraped and painted, community parks have been rejuvenated, handicap ramps have been built, and windows replaced. There has been clean up and restoration after flooding, porches repaired, insulation and dry wall installed, and many other accomplishments and projects.

In 1997, the Diocese of Steubenville and St. Anthony’s Parish gave the former St. Anthony’s Convent to the Urban Mission to provide housing for our work teams.  This house has space for groups of 60 people, which includes comfortable sleeping rooms, a kitchen, dining room, showers, and restroom facilities.  This opens the opportunities for work teams to come to share in the JOSHUA program year round.