Cup of Cool Water was founded by Mark Terrell.
In the spring of 1995, God kept reminding Mark of two youth who were homeless who he met while in college at Whitworth University. Mark would pray for them, but one day prayer didn’t seem to be enough.
So he asked God, “Why?”
It was then that God came into Mark’s apartment and said, “I am trying to get your attention. I want you to share My love and hope with youth who are homeless through outreach, day and evening drop-in, shelter, school, and follow-up.”
Mark responded, “Yes Lord, and I need three things: credibility, accountability, and someone to take care of the money.”
Three weeks later, Mark met a man whose ministry helped people like Mark get started. Soon an advisory board was formed, and Mark started doing outreach by himself. That didn’t work out too well. God told Mark to pray for volunteers. The first volunteer came on October 9, 1995. Shortly after that, more volunteers showed up. They would meet and walk around downtown, looking for youth who are homeless.
Over the next few years, Cup of Cool Water added an office at Central United Methodist, then First Baptist (now Slavic Baptist Church), and then City Gate Fellowship. Finally in 2004, Cup of Cool Water moved into its current location on West Second Avenue.
Founder and President
Mark Terrell is our Founder and President. He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Whitworth University and a doctorate of ministry degree from Bakke Graduate School. Mark founded CCW in 1995 out of the back of his ’89 200SX, and he’s since led the ministry through partnerships with several churches and ultimately into our current building. He appreciates the community that is created here between the staff, kids, and donors. “It truly takes everyone using their gifts to make this place a place of peace, hope, and love. After 20 years I am still in awe at how God continues to transform the staff and kids into the people He created us to be. We are constantly learning and growing and God is continually faithful.” Mark enjoys spending time with family, backpacking, riding bicycles, swimming, running, reading, washing the dishes (really!), yard work, and taking naps. >
Educational Services Director
Rachel Terrell is our Educational Services Director. She earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Whitworth University and a master’s degree in teaching at-risk students from Gonzaga University. Rachel began volunteering at CCW in 1996 while at Whitworth. She met future husband Mark Terrell through a mutual friend and continued volunteering after their wedding until their first child was born in 1999. She returned as a staff member in 2009. “I enjoy working with our youth and the staff. I appreciate the freedom of my position. I get to create new ways for our youth, for our staff, and for the Spokane community to connect and learn from each other.” Rachel also enjoys backpacking, snowshoeing, swimming, and “attempting to grow fruits and veggies in my backyard.”>
Cool Water Bikes Manager
Noah Sutherland is our Cool Water Bikes Manager. He’s read lots and lots of books (and even earned a computer science degree at one point). Noah started at CCW as a volunteer fixing viruses on the (one and only) CCW computer in the fall of 2000. “Actually, I nearly destroyed the drop-in center before that.” (You’ll have to ask him for the full story in person.) Noah appreciates being able to combine his passions with the work God is doing in the lives of youth. Some of those passions include playing with his two boys, reading, and homebrew beer.>
Shelby Baglien is our Office Administrator. She earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Boise State University. In 2014, Shelby received an email from God—almost literally—inviting her to apply for the administrative position at CCW, and she started working with us that May. “I love that we are prayerful about everything. This is God's ministry and we are to be good stewards of the time, money, and relationships he gives us. We all take that very seriously. I appreciate having freedom to learn, create, and make mistakes. The youth we serve are unlike any people I've ever known. I've learned so much from them. They teach me their perspectives and open my eyes to new things. Also, the people who come to donate their time, resources, and items surprise me with their love for God and people. I am so blessed by how much they give of themselves to love others.” In addition to serving the CCW community, Shelby enjoys swimming, paddle boarding, traveling, and playing with kids at church and at her other job with Spokane Public Schools as an Express Substitute (an after-school program).>
Aaron Bracht is a Youth Advocate at CCW. He grew up in the thriving metropolis of Ephrata in central Washington, and moved to Spokane to attend Whitworth University where he graduated in 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in Christian theology. Aaron became involved at CCW when his pastor recommended that he apply for an open position here. Aaron appreciates the tremendous support he’s received from Mark and the rest of his coworkers. He looks forward to coming to work each day, and feels comfortable voicing his thoughts, opinions, or struggles. “The most surprising elements have been the beauty I've discovered in street culture. There is an incredible amount of love, compassion, talent, and self-sacrifice that I see daily among the youth I work with.” Aaron enjoys rock climbing, ice climbing, mountain biking, and mountaineering, as well as reading novels, theological works, and historical works. He also plays guitar and piano, and he loves to dance and hear live music.>
Drew Dotson is our Development Director. She received a bachelor’s degree in communications and history from Whitworth University, and she’s been with CCW since May 2014. Drew appreciates the opportunity to observe the humanity in our clients, which has been incredibly eye opening for her, “both in their brokenness and need for a savior as well their creativity, intelligence, and humor. We work with some pretty incredible kids who, like me, were created by a good God in His likeness!” Drew loves being outdoors, riding her bike, and spending time with her friends and family.>
Volunteer Coordinator and Youth Advocate
Jeremy is our Volunteer Coordinator and Youth Advocate. He earned a bachelor’s degree in theology from Whitworth University and is working toward his master’s degree in theology. He’s been with Cup of Cool Water since March 2014, and he cares deeply for youth who have been abused and neglected. Jeremy considers his involvement with CCW as a gift that he constantly receives. “It has been a blessing to be a part of an organization that cares about [the staff’s] well-being. I have been inspired by the care and compassion of the people here who are involved with clients and volunteers.” Jeremy enjoys rock climbing, reading, and working on home projects.>