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SPOTTED AT GRACE: NCL METROPORT

Young women spent their lunchtime hosting Feed Our Kids for the children of Trailwood Mobile Home Estates last week. The group served an estimated 650 lunches to children most vulnerable to food insecurity.

National Charity League (NCL) is a national non-profit organization designed to forge bonds between mother and daughter by serving the  local community.

These young leaders have also taken part in numerous GRACE projects, including preparation and post-event projects for the GRACE Gala.

Last year its members invested 4,800 volunteer hours to local charities, including GRACE. See photo album below!

INSPIRED TO SERVE?

Feed Our Kids will continue every weekday this summer, and supplies are always appreciated. Individuals can contribute by donating juice boxes, bags of snacks or other kid-friendly foods to the GRACE Food Pantry.

If you’re not able to have a physical presence at Feed Our Kids sites, there are still options to adopt meals on behalf of the children or provide supplemental snacks and beverages.

For as little as $2 per child, businesses can commit to adopting a day or workweek as meal hosts.

You may also donate items for goody bags, including books, toys and games. Donations can be dropped off at GRACE Main.

BE CHARITY CHIC NEXT SATURDAY

 

Correction: Charmin Charlie shopping event will take place next Saturday, July 1, not this Saturday, as the original GRACE E-News stated. 

Add a little color to your jewelry box by shopping at Charming Charlie in Southlake on July 1 and 10% of your purchase goes back to GRACE! Third party proceeds supplement operational funding required to ensure families have food, shelter, clothing and medical care.

For those ambitious jewelry lovers who want to get their Christmas shopping complete by July—all purchases over $1,500 will yield 20% back to GRACE.

Be sure to show this flyer prior to your purchase.

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BBQ MORE YOUR THING?

Fortunately for you, Big Daddy’s Stock the GRACE Food Pantry event has been rescheduled for July 19. Get details here!

JUNE IS HUNGER ACTION MONTH

June is designated to acknowledge a closed-curtain issue: hunger. Here are some quick facts to help your family build awareness of the needs, along with tangible ways to address hunger in your community.

A family who lacks consistent access to enough food for all household members or cut back on groceries to pay rent, utilities, medicine, etc. is at risk for food insecurity.

THE NEED

Texas has the second highest number of family members at risk for hunger, and Tarrant County ranks as high as 18.1%, compared to the 15.8% national average.

There are some local challenges to consider. Nearly one fourth of GCISD’s student base is enrolled in free or reduced lunches.

Many children from these families live in what is referred to as a “food desert,” defined as not having convenient access to grocery stores for fresh product versus convenient stores.

Other barriers to consider are transportation, education, and time resources, all of which play a more critical role to a family that works stringent hours with a difficult commute.

ABOUT GRACE CLIENTS

Nearly half of all GRACE clients are the “working poor”, whose paycheck-to-paycheck cycle potentially sends families with unexpected bills into a downward spiral without intervention. This is especially true for workers who do not have paid time off and have to take a pay cut when their child gets the flu, for instance.

What’s even more alarming is that a great majority of all GRACE client households are headed by women, meaning there are many single mothers working long shifts, often facing hardships alone.

Of the 5,100 individuals GRACE serves on average each year, 44% are children.

HOW TO MEET THE NEED

The need is great, but our community has fostered many programs to alleviate the burden of food insecurity for families who have recently lost their jobs, their homes or any other financial crisis.

GRACE’s self-select Food Pantry is designed to give food to families in a way that is dignified and promotes budgeting skills. Before anything else, families seeking emergency assistance through GRACE Client Services will receive food in their cupboard and produce in their refrigerator.

Our senior population is at a severe risk for hunger, among other ailments that come from immobility, isolation and a fixed income. The Food Pantry also facilitates monthly commodities for Friends & Family program, which houses food and essential items for our local seniors.

Donations and volunteers are an ongoing need to support this effort.

The Community Garden produces an average of 1,500 pounds of fresh, organic produce yearly. Volunteers are needed to tend to the harvest on a regular basis, and help on Garden Work Days.

GRACE Grocery Giveaway is a Mobile Food Pantry that delivers kitchen staples to vulnerable neighborhoods every Friday in the summer. On average, 12,000 bags of groceries are given to families each year. Volunteers are needed to set up the marketplace for family members to collect the food.

Feed Our Kids is perhaps the most-widely known initiative, supplying over 37,500 meals to at-risk children over the summer months. Businesses, civic groups and church congregations are encouraged to sponsor meals or volunteer during the summer months.

If you feel compelled to partner with GRACE to alleviate hunger, we’ll help you find a program that’s the best fit for you. Contact Volunteer Manager Lara Hohweiler to get started, or attend our upcoming Volunteer Orientation to serve at GRACE.

DALLAS POLICE OFFICER STEPS UP FOR KIDS

When Dallas Police Officer Brian Nolff worked security for a private event, he never would have guessed the impact it would make in the lives of children two years later.

It began with a holiday affair, whose host asked attendees to bring a Christmas gift for children in need as entry to the private party. Unfortunately, unforeseen circumstances caused the donation to a national charity to fall through.

By complete happenstance, the toys were entrusted to Officer Nolff to find good homes in the Dallas area, a project he executed without hesitation. The experience made such an impression on him that he wanted to do more.

“When we gave toys to underprivileged children in our area, it was apparent that some children were getting a new gift for the first time,” said Officer Nolff. “I also wanted to give [families] something that was useful throughout the year.”

During what officers call “Crime Watch Meetings,” an immersive program that involves getting to know residents in neighborhoods must vulnerable to crime, Office Nolff noticed the state of children’s shoes.

“Some children didn’t even have shoes,” remembered Nolff.

So he went to DFW retailers to collect brand new shoes, which he strategically collected in the middle of the year, when many holiday gifts or ‘Christmas bonus’ shoes would have worn out.

Officer Nolff was put in touch with GRACE Church Partner, Rich Green, Care & Support Pastor of Compass Christian Church, who directed the donations to benefit families through GRACE.

Thanks to this donation, new shoes will be given to 95 children this summer! Officer Nolff is quick to point out that this isn’t the end of his collection campaign to serve children. Thanks to Officer Nolff for his selflessness both on duty and off the clock.

Officer Nolff also works with Crime Intervention Team (CIT), an initiative designed to educate law enforcement about mental illness as it relates to homelessness.

#GRACEBackstheBlue

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HERE ARE THE COMMUNITY BUSINESSES THAT HAVE RALLIED AROUND THE MISSION OF GRACE

Every day, our community is made up of families who face seemingly insurmountable hurdles to make rent, utilities, hospital bills, or other expenses.

Single mothers lie awake at night reeling from the day, wondering how they are going to meet the demands of the next week. Fathers are afraid to share that they’ve been laid off, or that a costly car repair has drained the savings he and his wife worked so hard to accrue.

But when the community rallies together, families find solutions and the comfort they are not alone.

One recent example of this is the outpouring of response from our Gala Gifting Party, an event that invites families and local businesses to share their blessings and raise funds for GRACE programs.

The items donated will be entered in the GRACE Gala Silent Auction, which generates a considerable portion of the GRACE Gala event proceeds. Not only are their gifts appreciated, the unique packages create excitement for Gala guests to enjoy.

Some of the experiences include a three-night stay at the Gaylord Texan(courtesy of Gaylord Texan), and the choice of dinner and tickets to any Broadway Show playing at the Bass Concert Hall (courtesy of Methodist Hospital Southlake.)

While there are more businesses still who graciously give toward the Silent Auction, we’d like to recognize the businesses who first stepped up to give of their resources.

We encourage patronage to these businesses who support those living right here in our neighborhoods and cities.

  • 360 West Magazine
  • A Hole in the Wall
  • Ame B Designs
  • Ana & Charley Erwin
  • Becky St. John
  • Bermuda Gold & Silver
  • Beverly and C D Sabathier
  • Big Fish Seafood Grill & Bar
  • Card My Yard, Trophy Club
  • Chill Catering
  • Costa Vida
  • Cotton Patch Cafe
  • Ed Folliard
  • Fringe Hair & Makeup Studio
  • Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center
  • Gourmet Apples & More
  • Grapevine Craft Brewery
  • Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center
  • Hilton Garden Inn DFW Grapevine
  • i Fratelli Pizza
  • Jeff Monaghan
  • Karen and David Parrish
  • La Hacienda Ranch
  • Gale and Associates
  • Methodist Hospital Southlake
  • Moon Healing Arts
  • New You Chiropractic Wellness
  • Omni Fort Worth Hotel
  • Palio’s Pizza Cafe
  • Rene & Wade Diebold
  • Rockfish
  • Salt Cave of Southlake
  • Scratch Kitchen
  • Sheila and Mark Moyer
  • Shelby & Brian Helm
  • Sorted Out
  • Southlake Style Magazine
  • Stacey Archer
  • Sweet and Sassy
  • Tammie Grantham
  • The Bar Method
  • Trinity Aesthetics and Laser, LLP
  • Velociter Group, LLC
  • Wildwood Grill
  • Winewood
  • Zar Clothier

 

DONOR SPOTLIGHT: FEED OUR KIDS SERVICE GROUPS

We are tremendously grateful to the local businesses, civic groups, and church congregations who show up faithfully on the hot summer afternoons to provide food and fellowship to at-risk children.

If you’re not able to have a physical presence at Feed Our Kids sites, there are still options to adopt meals on behalf of the children or provide supplemental snacks and beverages.

Feed Our Kids will continue every weekday this summer, and supplies are always appreciated. Individuals can contribute by donating juice boxes, bags of snacks or other kid-friendly foods to the GRACE Food Pantry (just be sure to mention the donations are for Feed Our Kids).

For as little as $2 per child, businesses can commit to adopting a day or workweek as meal hosts. Groups also have the option of sponsoring the meals for other groups to host.

Depending on the site and type of meal, the average cost each day ranges between $100 and $500 to feed between 40-200 children. Groups are encouraged to bring games and engage with the children, though not required.

Volunteers may also donate items for goody bags, including books, toys and games. If you are interested in volunteering with Feed Our Kids, please contact Lori Stevens.

Thanks to the following groups that have graciously hosted Feed Our Kids sites and sponsored meals for at-risk children.

  • YMSL
  • City of Grapevine
  • First Baptist Colleyville
  • Abiding Grace Lutheran
  • White’s Chapel Methodist Church
  • NCL Metroport
  • First Baptist Southlake
  • NCL Southlake
  • Randy White Realty

 

VIEW OUR ANNUAL REPORT

As we advance our mission to extend compassion to struggling families, we respectfully ask for your continued support. GRACE pledges to be an earnest steward of your treasured time, tithe and talents, directing them to those who need it most.

Fiscal Year Services

  • Provided relief to 4,961 family members facing crisis
  • Collaborated with 23 displaced families with comprehensive casework, financial coaching, food and housing for up to two years
  • Facilitated 5,427 visits to the Food Pantry and provided 752 holiday food baskets to families in need
  • Clothed 3,695 family members who were displaced or in crisis
  • On site to collaborate with 20 families who lost their homes in an apartment fire to ensure families received emergency relief
  • Facilitated 61,697 volunteer hours
  • Accepted 2,621 donations to the Food Pantry
  • Accepted 4,040 patient visits to the Community Clinic
  • Accommodated 100 immobile seniors with essential commodities
  • Gave groceries to 3,195 family members
  • Provided 36,574 lunches to at-risk children during the summer months
  • Contributed 25,990 unique services to GRACE clients

See our impact in finer detail by viewing our Fiscal Year 2016 Annual Report.

HERE ARE THREE WAYS YOU CAN GIVE BACK BY NEXT WEEKEND

Sometimes the hardships of our community as a whole can feel too overwhelming to remedy, and often we are asked how families can make a tangible difference together.

Fortunately, there are many ways families can work together to lend a hand up to other families facing hardship in a way that blesses the giver and receiver.

Here are three opportunities to involve your family that will make an impact before we reach the end of next weekend:

Cultivate growth at the Community Gardens

The GRACE Community Garden is hosting a Garden Service Day next Saturday, June 24, from 8:00 a.m. until lunchtime.

The morning will be spent planting tomatillos, pruning tomatoes, and planting melons and cucumbers.

Garden Service Days are crucial to the success of the initiative to provide wholesome, organic produce to families facing hardship at the GRACE Food Pantry. Sign up here.

Want to see what a tangible difference Garden Days make in the lives of families? Check out Our Mouths Are Watering, Our Hearts Are Full to see how one family utilized produce and kitchen staples from the Food Pantry to bring hope and laughter to their table.

Stock the Food Pantry at Big Daddy’s Ship Store

Big Daddy’s Ship Store is hosting a charity event to collect food and donations to benefit the GRACE Food Pantry. The event is happening on Tuesday, June 20 from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. at Scott’s Landing Marina Club Room (neighboring Big Daddy’s) for barbeque and live entertainment. Find more details here.

Let your children shop for Back to School needs

Summer affords more time to talk to your children about their peers whose families might be struggling to make ends meet. Having little helpers shop for Back to School needs for a child his or her own age encourages empathy and perspective.

You can find this year’s Back to School shopping list here.

Historically, GRACE has dispensed up backpacks for up to 350 schoolchildren each year, and meets the Back to School clothing needs of approximately 1,000 children.

JOHNSON & JOHNSON HELPS FAMILIES THRIVE

GRACE was honored to welcome the team at Johnson & Johnson to support the mission of GRACE at the Food Pantry.

Johnson & Johnson aspires to make a profound impact on reducing infant and mother mortality rates around the world, along with the support and tools to see local families thrive.

The monthly struggle with competing financial priorities or unforeseen circumstances makes it difficult for many families to reach a healthy place.

The total estimated cost for diapers and wipes for one child approaches $1,100, and baby formula can set a family back $150 or more a month for mothers who aren’t able to breastfeed or do not produce breastmilk.

With the average number of children ranging from 2-3 children per GRACE household, the residual costs can be detrimental to a family that relies on a fixed income to make ends meet.

That’s why the GRACE Food Pantry also dispenses toiletries, baby products and other non-food essential items to alleviate the cost burden for families in need.

This campaign is only possible from the generosity of families who desire to share their blessings with others.

HOW TO REMEDY THE NEED FOR BABY ITEMS

Host a client baby shower

Businesses, civic groups and church groups have employed their creative energy to host baby showers on behalf of clients. The group puts a wish list or registry together, and guests bring the items on behalf of expectant mothers or mothers of infants.

Add baby items to your shopping list

The GRACE Food Pantry is always in need for diapers, especially in larger sizes 5 & 6. Baby item donations are accepted at the GRACE Food Pantry, 837 E. Walnut Street in Grapevine during operating hours:

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 9 am – 5 pm
Wednesday 12:30-5:30 pm

A heartfelt thanks to the Coppell team at Johnson & Johnson for providing support at GRACE!

 

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