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Showing posts with label volunteer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label volunteer. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Spotlight: Two Local Homeless Ministries

Last week I posted a story about a local minister that has gone 'homeless' for the month of January to draw attention to the plight of the homeless, and particularly foster kids that 'age out' of the system.  If any of you have ever spent a winter in Ohio, you know it's no picnic.  We've had lower than normal temperatures and more than normal snowfall.  

I've been following his vlog and tweets on facebook as he attempts to learn what it's really like to live on the streets.  Last night, Pastor Ryan was featured in another local news story from our CBS affiliate WHIO TV.  In this video, there is a short interview with Cindi Stevens of Target: Dayton.  Yes, THE Target: Dayton - the one whose link is on my sidebar.  Even though Cindi's comments were brief, you get such a good feel for who she is and how she feels about those she ministers to.  In his interview, Pastor Ryan shares his impression of his trip to another local church that serves meals to the homeless, although on a much smaller scale than Target: Dayton.  His feelings mirror those I experience when I serve at TD.

I encourage you to follow Pastor Ryan as his eyes are opened to what it's like to be homeless and cold.  I also pray that you will be encouraged to seek out a ministry in your local area and find out how you can become involved.  Prepare for you life to be changed.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Cold Hands - Warm Heart

I found a new blog to follow.  The subject is near and dear to me...  the plight of the homeless.  I think it's such a tragedy, especially in these times of boarded up homes, to have people living in cardboard boxes, or even less.  It breaks my heart to think of someone trying to sleep while they are freezing, wondering what danger may lurk just beyond the shadows.

Sandy blogs at the Bridge and Beyond Project. Here is the mission statement posted on her blog:

Our goal is to warm homeless by knitting and

  crocheting hats, mittens, and scarves for men

living under a bridge here in Central Ohio. 
We will also make hats, mittens, scarves 
appropriate for women and children who 
are cared for in 2 free clinics in the area.

Please check out her blog.  I know many of you knit and crochet.  What a wonderful gift to be able to give someone... the gift of warmth through the bitter winter weather. 

While I'm on the subject...  there is an organization near me that I would like to tell you about.  Target: Dayton! Ministries is a church located in downtown Dayton. The primary focus of the ministry is to reach the poor and homeless of Dayton, Ohio for Christ.

I first became aware of their ministry when the Target Choir performed at our church.  It was a very moving service.  Most of the choir members are the city's homeless, either currently or formerly.  It is quite humbling to hear a homeless person speak of the loving grace of God.

Our church is one of many that help support their ministry.  Many area churches take their turn at serving the meals provided there.  Each of Pastor Mark's services are followed by a meal.  The volunteers man the kitchen and serve the food, as well as clean up afterward.  Once the food and trash are cleared away, the volunteers are assigned cleaning task for the building.  It is amazing to watch Cindi organize the volunteer staff.

The Christmas season is right around the corner.  It is the time of year that people think strongly of charity.  If you're not already involved in some type of volunteer work, I urge you to do just one thing, one time.  It doesn't have to be grand.  Dip up some food at a soup kitchen.  Mail Sandy a knit hat.  Drop off a blanket to a shelter.  I've got a feeling you won't stop at one deed.  Once you realize that one person really can make a difference, I hope you share the knowledge with others.