Our Core Values

Believing in the power of hope (Christ)
Living where we serve (in our community)
One-to-one (relationships and discipleship)
Christ in (in all that we do)

Our Story (Believing)

Dr. Dwight and Stephanie Young began BLOC Ministries in 1998 after working as youth pastors for more than a decade in Cincinnati and in Knoxville, Tennessee. As community pastors, they’d seen youth and adults whose lives and neighborhoods were breaking or shattered. The Youngs realized that many students slipped between the cracks: not involved in school, church, social clubs, or any productive pursuits. Yet these were the ones who were usually at the highest risk for dropping out, drugs, teen pregnancy, crime, sex trafficking and other risks of urban streets.

BLOC was created to build connections and safe spaces for students, families and adults to thrive and succeed in spite of difficult circumstances. We’re a faith-based non-profit that focuses on healthy, personal relationships and activities that help to build hope, purpose, and vital life skills.

We started with one after-school site in the village of Cleves, Ohio. Along the many hours of playing basketball or board games, eating pizza, or quizzing on spelling words - connections were formed. Students shared their deepest fears, highest hopes, and hardest life struggles that they and their families faced. We decided to join them in a journey toward healing, hope, and love. We are BLOC.

Our Staff (Living)

BLOC has assembled a unique, innovative and dynamic team of individuals who live and work in the neighborhoods they serve. Yes, our staff live in the very urban centers where they deploy their programs and work every day. These committed individuals don't just leave the office at 5 p.m. everyday - for many, their work is only beginning.

At BLOC Ministries, our missionaries support-raise 100% of their salaries. For some, this is a foreign concept-or something reserved for missionaries going overseas-but for us, it is a tremendous gift. This naturally leads to the question, “Why?”

Our calling is unique. Rather than considering ourselves staff members of a faith-based nonprofit, we believe we are missionaries to our neighbors. We have each received a call to plunge headfirst into pain, trauma, and brokenness. We would not be able to do what we do without the generous support of men and women nationwide who believe in our mission.

We support-raise because it allows us to invite a vast array of people to join us in mission. Not every person is called to live in Price Hill, but we are called to love those on the margins, those with no one else to fight for them. We couldn’t do what we do without those who invest their time, energy, and prayers, and funds both to the ministry as a whole, and to individual staff members.

Our Discipleships (One-to-One)
  • We shape, form and transcend lives, one at a time as a mentor and as a neighbor, sharing life together to encourage and nurture positive life choices and goals.
  • We are one family, all children of God.
  • We provide growth opportunities, creating a positive ripple effect in the community making changes that impact their families for a lifetime. Over time, this can flow from one-to-one: changing families, rebuilding blocks, saving lives and transforming communities.
  • We find our self-worth through God and healthy relationships that we model in neighborhoods where life and spiritual perspectives are broken or marred.
  • We change lives through short- and long-term intervention and prevention programs and services to meet neighbors' needs where they are in their life walk. We provide the necessary mental health & counseling services, guidance, mentoring, arts exposure, after-school and in-school support, trauma intervention and much more through nearly 30 BLOC Ministries programs, industries and services.
  • We provide, track and deploy job skills, training, development & placement via our 6 key social enterprise businesses known as BLOC Industries which incorporate one-to-one training programs and ensure job or career placement with many of our strategic business and corporate partners.
Our Why (Christ)

Cincinnati’s only one-to-one urban city ministry where our staff live and work daily, BLOC’s biblical foundation is Ephesians 4:4-6:

“There is one body, and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called: One Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”

  • We are joyfully passionate about the hope we received from Jesus Christ. He is Who inspires us.
  • We encourage and challenge others so they might find hope; and in turn, they become the leaders of their community’s change as they invest hope in their friends, neighbors, and family.
  • We desire to build a strong urban community, not from the outside, but from the inside by helping our neighbors grow.  We are not a community center but rather - a "center of community."
  • We work where the needs are greatest and the neighborhood resources smaller than the need so that BLOC brings added benefits, rather than duplicating services.


Rebuilding a Cincinnati Community
“Either I’m going to keep living that life, and I’m going to die,” she recalled thinking to herself. “Or I just surrender to God and trust that there’s a better life out there.” Riley chose surrender and Redeemed Home, a ministry on the West Side of Cincinnati that serves women who have experienced trafficking, prostitution and addiction.

Read Story Here

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