Last year, the elders and staff identified "continued development of our culture of service" as a goal for the upcoming year. Under the leadership of Dwight Rohrer and Phil Hostetter, a team has formed to develop ways for our congregation to get involved in local service opportunities.
As the team reflected on ways to serve our local community, we recognized the many organizations in our community that are already doing amazing work. We created the Community Sharing Project as a way to bless our neighbors through the financial support of local organizations.
The team also recognized that this past year has been challenging for everyone, and each person’s challenges have been unique. Many individuals and families in our community are struggling with meeting basic needs, including food, housing, clothing, and paying for utilities. As we discussed organizations to support, we aimed to pick organizations focusing on these four categories of food, housing, clothing, and utilities. We also recognize the beautiful diversity of our community and we aimed to choose organizations that reflect that diversity.
We realize that our list of organizations is nowhere near inclusive of all of the wonderful work happening in our community. However, we are very excited about the organizations we have chosen and the opportunity to partner with them through financial support.
This is the time of year that many people are receiving tax returns and stimulus checks. We encourage you to think and pray about how you may want to use some of that money to give back to the local community. We can love our neighbors in many different ways, and we offer the Community Sharing Project as one opportunity to share our blessings with those around us.
See the introduction video here.
Fundraising Goal: $40,000
UPDATE 4/18/2021: Two donors have offered to match, up to a total of $15,000, all donations received April 18 through April 25 (the deadline). Currently we have received $19,000 towards our goal.
Update 4/20/21: $5,550 was received this week. With that being matched, the total has now reached $30,100.
Logistics: To give a donation:
- write a check to Neffsville Mennonite Church (2371 Lititz Pike, Lancaster, PA 17601) and designate on the memo line: Community Sharing Project.
- Use our online giving option and designate Community Sharing Project in the "Comments" section. https://nmc.breezechms.com/give/online
We will be collecting money until April 25, at which time we will announce our grand total and distribute the money to the local organizations.
All donations will be split evenly among these eight selected organizations.
- Blessings of Hope.
Many of you are familiar with Blessings of Hope, a local food bank that repackages, distributes, and shares food with regional food banks, ministries, and families in need. The community service team is working on a project that will involve purchasing food boxes from Blessings of Hope to distribute to families in our community. More details about that project will be coming in the next few weeks. Donations received will support this project as well as Blessings of Hope’s general mission.
- Arbor Place.
Arbor Place works with local students and their families, providing an after-school program, sports programs, a summer program, and meals. The community service team is working to organize an opportunity for Neffsville to prepare and serve a meal to the kids at Arbor Place. More details will be coming soon. Donations received will fund this meal as well as support Arbor Place’s general mission.
- Lancaster County Homeless Coalition
A network of organizations and individuals working together to provide all people experiencing homelessness within our community with shelter and a place to stay. Donations would support their shelter supply fund and their mobile hygiene/shower truck.
- Tabor Community Services
Tabor’s mission is to help strengthen the Lancaster County community by giving people the tools and inspiration to meet their housing and financial challenges and by revitalizing our surroundings. Their programs help individuals and families with rent/mortgage and utility needs.
- Lancaster County Food Hub
The Food Hub distributes food and clothing in Lancaster City, runs the Wheels to Work program to help individuals afford vehicles needed for commuting to work, and runs a women’s winter shelter in Lancaster.
- Parish Resource Center
The Parish Resource Center organizes the Lancaster Community Meal Program, which is a network of organizations and churches that together provide three free meals a day to those in need in Lancaster City.
- Brightside Opportunity Center
Brightside Opportunity Center providers services and resources in southwest Lancaster City, including an elder and family food gift card distribution program and fitness programs.
- San Juan Bautista
A church in Lancaster City that organizes food and clothing programs for community members in that area of the city, with particular outreach to Spanish-speaking community members.
Thank you for being a part of this exciting project and partnering with these wonderful organizations in our community who are showing love to our neighbors each and every day.