"From here I send them to get their GED and learn to speak English," Gúzman said.
Though Gúzman said most of the work around the property is done by staff, on Tuesday, a group of Mormon missionaries was busy at work.
Community volunteer Rose Banks said the missionaries were cleaning the outside of the premises, the warehouse, the patio, the eaves, the outdoor toys and washing the outside of the house. In addition, they were trimming trees, mowing, edging and painting the interior.
Leading the missionaries' efforts was Elder Wright, who said he is from northern Utah. He said all the missionaries are between ages 18 and 21.
The work of the missionaries is not on behalf of local churches, Wright said. Rather, each person decides on his own whether to volunteer for a mission and the church decides where to send the missionaries for two years.
"We don't decide where we go," he said. "We just decide if we want to."
Wright said the church then calls and sends the young people where needed, anywhere in the world.
Wright said the missionaries helping at House of Hope are assigned to the San Diego/Imperial County area and are staying in different parts of the Valley, but all are associated with what he called "three buildings."
"It's all the same church," he said.
The work they do takes up much of their time and they do not watch television or read during their missions. They spend time reading the Scriptures and teaching them to others.
"We do this full-time," Wright said. "It's a time-out in our lives. When we go home, we resume our lives."
To donate materials to House of Hope, call 352-1182.
Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez can be reached at 337-3440.