Charitable organizations like Inter-Faith continue to struggle to meet community needs due to the lingering effects of the coronavirus. There are currently over 150 homeless families with children in eastern Montgomery County.
This begins our 28th year of participating in the Interfaith mission. In 2020 due to the pandemic, we reimagined the workings of the mission but continued to assist the families for actually 2 months. Nancy Bennett and I have referred to September as the 30-day challenge in the past and now we have the “New 30 Day Challenge!”
In the past, during the month of September, JUMC has become the home for up to three homeless families in the Interfaith Housing Alliance from our community. This year we will continue to be cautious not really knowing how the Fall will pan out and keep part of the protocol for the Interfaith families that we started in 2020.
There are not many churches in our network that have the necessary amenities to do this, where we have a separate structure – the Ark. We are blessed that we have the facility to do this. We still do not have a shower but we are continuing to work with Upper Dublin Township to get this approved.
The long-term goal had been to start a capital campaign to finish the renovations in the Ark, which include a shower.
Last year we started the ARK Renovation Project and we raised enough money to start the project but we have been going through a long process with the Township to get the permits necessary to complete the project. More on this in the coming weeks, as we receive information from Upper Dublin.
This year we will have up to 3 families that will stay at the ARK. We will not need overnight volunteers for the month, but see below for other volunteer opportunities.
As we get closer I will share the make-up of the families. During the month of September we will need volunteers to:
- make dinners and drop them off in the coolers outside of the Ark, marked : Family #1, Family #2, etc to keep the food separated.
- transportation, if needed; and
- donations of gift cards to local food stores.
Last year there were some volunteers who also added notes of encouragement to the families (which were greatly appreciated) and small toys, books or other items for the kids.
Inter-Faith Housing Alliance’s mission is to help homeless and low-income families achieve sustainable independence through a community faith-based response.
Although September 2021 will still look different, please help us once again make this a success and share your thoughts and love with those that are less fortunate than us. Remember you may be the only person in their lives that has shown them that someone cares!
Calendars for sign-ups are available again through an on-line calendar. Here is the information for that calendar:
Volunteers can log in to:
Carecalendar.org to sign up to bring a meal
Calendar ID: 284299
Security Code: 7124