The following local ministries are supported by Grace (monetarily and/or with volunteer service) through our Social Ministry Team.
Serving our communities at a local level is a great way to respond to our ministry partners’ needs and to learn more about what God is doing in our communities. Opportunities exist throughout the year that you can participate in by praying, financially supporting or by getting up and serving!
American Red Cross
The Red Cross, born of a desire to bring assistance without discrimination to the wounded on the battlefield, endeavors—in its international and national capacity—to prevent and alleviate human suffering wherever it may be found. Its purpose is to protect life and health and to ensure respect for the human being. It promotes mutual understanding, friendship, cooperation and lasting peace amongst all peoples. http://www.redcross.org/local/western-north-carolina
The Good Samaritan Attic
The Attic is a ministry of Grace Lutheran Church and Immaculate Conception Church that provides furniture at no cost to those in need. Volunteers pick up furniture from donors, deliver it to a warehouse, where those in need can come one hour a week to select furniture. Over 30 Grace Church members staff this ministry: phone Coordinators, drivers and warehouse workers.
The Blood Connection
More than 4.5 million lives are saved each year by a single, selfless act—donating blood. In fact, just one pint of blood can help save up to three lives. Every minute of every day, someone will need blood. Because of your support, The Blood Connection is able to make vital connections that save lives in our communities. http://thebloodconnection.org/
Blue Ridge Community Health Services
The Migrant Health Center was started by Claire Heyden Burson, a Public Health nurse who had moved to Hendersonville after spending time working in the Caribbean. Opened in 1963, Blue Ridge Community Health Services (BRCHS) has its roots in providing migrant farm workers with health care. In fact, Blue Ridge is the nation’s oldest migrant health center and today provides medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy, and outreach services to all at twelve locations. http://www.brchs.com/
Boys and Girls Club
The Liaison between Grace Lutheran Church and the Boys and Girls Club of Henderson County reports to the Social Ministry Committee on the activities of the Club and how the Church and the Committee may be of assistance to the mission of the Club. The duties include writing an article once a year for the church newsletter, organizing a work project for the Club with the Servant Saturday project supervisor and coordinating with the Club on implementation and reporting to the Committee the highlights of the activities of the Club. The liaison for the Club should also be a spokesman for increasing financial support from the church for the Club’s programs. http://www.bgchendersonco.org/
Blue Ridge Prison & Jail Ministry
In the spirit of Matthew’s 25th chapter, this ministry of service and visitation to the inmates at Henderson County Detention Center has been a GLC outreach for many years. We are called to provide God’s Word and support to the incarcerated in our community. Our focus remains with weekly visits inside the jail on a cell-to-cell basis by several of our members, and is complemented by a monthly grilled hot dog meal (Hot Dogs & Hugs) for their family and friends during weekend visiting hours. Additionally, our congregation collects bibles along with paperback books to provide for the spiritual and recreational reading opportunities for the inmates. All are invited to participate so please feel free to contact one of our volunteers to explore this outreach. http://brjpm.org/
Children and Family Resource Center
The goal of the Children and Family Resource Center is to improve the lives of children in Henderson County from birth to adult. It targets children, parents, and teachers with the mission of helping every child reach her/his full potential. This agency’s services include adolescent parenting assistance, early childhood development learning and assessment, behavioral intervention services, parent education for school success, and help for community child care. In order to better assist residents, the Resource Center provides an Early Learning Center filled with books, parent resources, and learning kits that can be checked out. When people enter the Children and Family Resource Center, they are immediately treated with warm hospitality, caring attention, and positive action. Not only do their clients benefit, but the entire community benefits from this organization that focuses on education in such broad ways. http://www.childrenandfamily.org/
Henderson County Council on Aging
The Council on Aging for Henderson County was formed by a group of concerned local community members who wanted to ensure that an agency existed that focused solely on the safety and well-being of the older adults in the Henderson County community. For more than 45 years, the Council on Aging has focused on making Henderson County a better place for the older adults in our community. The Henderson County Council on Ageing is a nonprofit, non-governmental agency providing and coordinating services to keep older adults living independently. It has a paid staff of 23, and over 400 volunteers. Several programs are supported: Meals on Wheels, delivering 215 hot meals to individuals 5 days a week: The Sammy Williams Center provides socialization through meals and activities: A case management program assists elderly residents in maintaining their ability to remain in their homes. Two thrift stores are operated to provide some funding. http://coahc.org/
Feed the Kids Coalition
The liaison between Grace Lutheran Church (Don Klug) and the Feed the Kids Coalition works with Becky Schmidt in making reports to the Social Ministry Committee on the activities of the Coalition and how the Church and the Committee may be of assistance to the mission of Feed the Kids. The duties include writing an article once a year for the church newsletter, and reporting to the Committee the highlights of the activities of Feed the Kids. The liaison for the Feed the Kids Coalition should also be a spokesman for increasing financial support from the church for the organization. http://www.feedthekidscoalition.org/
Four Seasons Compassion for Life
Four Seasons Compassion for Life is a team of professionals and volunteers that works with caregivers to allow them to minister to the body, mind, spirit, and emotional components of end of life care for loved ones. While primarily done in the home setting, the Elizabeth House allows for in-patient hospice care when needed. An extensive Palliative Care program for symptom control is also available to those seeking to continue aggressive treatment for their underlying condition. Bereavement services are available to all, even if they have not otherwise been under Hospice care. Four Seasons CFL provides all care needed by patients regardless of their ability to pay. www.fourseasonscfl.org
The Free Clinics (TFC)
The Free Clinics (TFC) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to ensure that quality healthcare is available for those who may otherwise fall through the cracks. They serve low-income residents who do not qualify for Medicaid or Medicare but who cannot afford medical insurance. This is accomplished through an amazing pool of over 270 volunteer doctors, dentists, nurses, interpreters, and everyday workers, in addition to a small paid staff. In Henderson and Polk counties, one in every five residents fits this category and is eligible for their services. More help is always needed and appreciated. www.thefreeclinics.org
Helping Hand Development Center
Helping Hand Developmental Center is a unique preschool program that provides exceptional early education opportunities to children with and without special needs in an inclusive environment. Children with special needs learn and play alongside children that are typically developing. Our center is the first preschool in Henderson County, NC to offer special education programs for children ages 3-5. Since 1967 they have served children with special needs such as autism, physical challenges, down syndrome, cerebral palsy, learning disabilities and language impairments. Their mission is to provide quality child development services to all children in Henderson County with a unique commitment to serve those who are physically, emotionally, and educationally challenged so that they may realize their potential. http://www.helpinghanddevelopmentalcenter.org/
Henderson County Habitat for Humanity
Through the work of Habitat, thousands of low-income families have found new hope in the form of affordable housing. Churches, community groups and others have joined together to successfully tackle a significant social problem―decent housing for all. Since 1976, Habitat has helped 6.8 million people find strength, stability and independence through safe, decent and affordable shelter.
Henderson County Habitat for Humanity, a Christian based organization, builds quality affordable homes, creates strong communities, and changes lives by partnering with committed volunteers, professional staff, and eligible families living in inadequate housing. These homes are sold by Habitat to the family at no profit, and financed with a no-interest loan from Habitat. Partner families contribute 400 hours of sweat equity before moving into their new home. http://www.habitat-hvl.org/
Henderson County Hunger Coalition
The Henderson County Hunger Coalition is committed to relieving hunger among those in need in Henderson County, by sponsoring and directing an annual Hunger Walk in September of every year. The Coalition is made up of volunteers of the Churches in Hendersonville, and has no paid staff. Publicity, route selection and marking, organizing the walkers at Jackson Park, and collecting the walkers receipts is all managed by the Coalition. The money collected, usually around $100,000 is divided up among 11 county agencies, such as IAM, Salvation Army, Meals on Wheels and The Storehouse.
Hendersonville Rescue Mission
For the past 34 years the Hendersonville Rescue Mission has provided food to the hungry, shelter to the homeless and programs that impact the lives of the less-fortunate of our community, such as an Adult Secondary Education program, the Good Samaritan Free Clinic, the Clothing Closet and an addiction/recovery Turning Point program. In October 2015 alone, the Rescue Mission ministered to 88 individuals, including 30 women and 6 children. Nearly 4000 meals were served to the homeless, hungry and addicted, but also to anyone in the general public who needed a hot meal. The food services at the Mission are quite unique in that the food is delicious and the entire public is welcome to join us for a meal, not just those staying in our living quarters. Our cooks pride themselves on serving a square, hot meal that includes salad, meat and two veggies, as well as dessert, and in the summertime, you may find us outside having a cookout. This may be the only real meal some people get in a day, so we want people to walk away from us satisfied, nourished and ready to deal with the challenges of their day. The Hendersonville Rescue Mission is a Christ-centered ministry simply believing that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has power to transform lives by transforming the hearts of men and women. The Rescue Mission receives no federal, state or local government funding and relies totally on the financial support of the local community. http://www.hendersonvillerescuemission.com/
Homes for Youth
Homes for Youth provides stable, safe, and appropriate housing with positive role models to homeless youth in Henderson County, enabling each young person to reach his or her full potential. We recognize that the causes of youth homelessness are diverse and that solutions must also be. We also recognize that it is necessary to begin to solve the problem. We are working to establish a licensed, accredited, professionally staffed, level one (that is youth without psychiatric illness or active addiction issues) 6 bed residential care home for girls aged 16-18, referred to us by DSS or the public school system. We plan to work in partnership (contract expertise) with a willing licensed residential program. While we work toward the long-term goal of establishing a home for girls, we are also working with DSS on the more immediate goal of recruiting foster parents, supporting the necessary training classes, and providing needed equipment to the Foster Parent Association supply closet. http://www.homesforyouth.org/
Housing Assistance Corporation
The Housing Assistance Corporation is a private, non-profit organization committed to providing safe and affordable housing for persons of limited income living in Henderson County and surrounding areas, because we believe every human being deserves the opportunity to live in a decent home. http://housing-assistance.com/
Interfaith Assistance Ministry (IAM)
IAM is a faith-based nonprofit organization committed to meeting the basic needs of Henderson County families in financial crisis. Founded in 1984, IAM is funded by congregations, businesses, civic groups and individuals and is powered by almost 300 volunteers who contribute over 36,000 hours of service every year. Our mission is to provide emergency relief to Henderson County Residents who are in financial crisis by offering food, clothing, funds, guidance and referrals in an atmosphere of compassion and respect. https://www.iamhendersoncounty.org/
Joseph Center Meals on Seventh Avenue
This ministry of service began in our congregation three years ago in answer to a request to partner with an outreach begun by Providence Baptist Church. A meal is prepared and served to community members every Sunday afternoon and donated food by Fresh Market is offered to supplement nutritional needs of these folks. In the past year, a larger space has been developed through the efforts of First United Methodist Church and individuals can take advantage of personal hygiene and laundry opportunities as well. Volunteers from Grace are involved with all facets of this outreach from food delivery to preparation and serving of the meals, to providing friendship and listening ears to the concerns and needs of our neighbors. A true ecumenical effort by our sisters and brothers of the faith. Feel free to join us!
Lutheran Disaster Response
Lutheran Disaster Response brings God’s hope, healing and renewal to people whose lives have been disrupted by disasters in the United States and around the world. When the dust settles and the headlines change, we stay to provide ongoing assistance to those in need. http://www.elca.org/Our-Work/Relief-and-Development/Lutheran-Disaster-Response/
Lutheran Services Carolinas
With the help of thousands of volunteers, donors, and faith partners, LSC helps veterans and others transition from homelessness to dignity; protects children at risk of abuse and neglect with foster care; improves the lives of those battling severe and persistent mental illness through innovative programs; encourages growth and independence for those with developmental disabilities; places children in loving adoptive homes; provides warmth and welcome to refugees seeking sanctuary; and enables many men and women with varying life challenges or disabilities live proudly and independently with residential or supportive services. LSC also provides a comprehensive array of residential options and support services to North Carolina seniors including vibrant retirement communities, quality rehabilitation and skilled care nursing services, assisted living residences, at home care, geriatric care management, and caregiver support. http://www.lscarolinas.net/
Ministry of Hope (Swananoa Women’s Prison)
The Ministry of Hope is a community-funded chaplaincy program which raises funds to employ on-site chaplains at Swannanoa Correctional Center for Women (SCCW) in Swannanoa, NC. Our chaplains conduct religious services in the center’s chapel and provide pastoral care and spiritual guidance to the inmates. Their guidance and leadership are crucial to helping these women, many of whom struggle with addiction, abuse, and grief issues. The women at SCCW are within five years of release or parole. Our chaplains offer them a sense of hope and real-world self-care tools to manage parenting, relationships, and employment with discernment and spiritual maturity.
Pisgah Legal Services
Pisgah Legal Services is an innovative nonprofit law firm founded in 1978 that:
- provides free civil legal aid to people who live in poverty;
- helps more than 15,000 of the most vulnerable people in our communities annually to meet urgent needs such as: housing, safety from abuse, health care and income;
- partners with dozens of other agencies to make sustainable change for people in crisis;
- coordinates the services of more than 300 pro bono attorneys in WNC;
- improves systems and policies that impact the lives of thousands of low-income people.
We provide not only immediate short-term help but long term solutions to women, men and children in crisis. Safelight gives individuals who have experienced interpersonal and sexual abuse a real second chance, an opportunity to redesign and better their lives. http://www.safelightfamily.org/
Servant Saturday Events
This will be the 22nd year that Grace Lutheran Church members have participated in their Annual Servant Saturday, with more than 100 Grace Lutheran volunteers going into Hendersonville area neighborhoods to provide assistance to agencies and individuals in need. Volunteers will spend Saturday doing projects for Boys and Girls Club, Four Seasons Compassion for Life, Interfaith Assistance Ministry, Safelight, Hendersonville Rescue Mission, Lutheran Missions, Children and Family Resource Center and Thrive. Many projects are completed and include painting, landscaping, gardening, mulching, window washing, cleaning, quilting, sandwich making and other odd jobs. Most projects will be completed in four to five hours, and project organizers expect Grace members will contribute more than 500 person-hours on this year’s Servant Saturday.
The Storehouse is a Christ-centered ministry established for the purpose of providing food and life’s most basic necessities for those in need in Henderson County. Our main project is an ongoing program to feed the hungry in Henderson County. This program provides an assortment of dry groceries. We also try to provide cleaning, hygiene, personal care items and some over-the-counter medications, none of which are covered by food stamps. The food program currently feeds 225-250 families per month. We are constantly receiving new referrals from other agencies in our community. We serve people and families of all age ranges. The Storehouse does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, age, ethnic origin, or religious affiliation. http://www.storehouseonline.org/
The Thrive Clubhouse
The Thrive Clubhouse is a psychosocial rehabilitation day program for adults with mental illness. The members strive to become more productive and self-sufficient citizens of the community. The Clubhouse assists members get back on their feet, helping them learn coping, social, independent living, and vocational skills. The Social Ministry Committee hosts the annual picnic and Christmas dinner. Through these events we give them a chance to enjoy each others’ company and meet Grace members.
Most people with a mental illness have a sense of “not fitting in”, of isolation and rejection, this is why the annual picnic and Christmas dinner are so important and meaningful to them. These events give them the opportunity to interact with Grace members, feel their own self-worth, acceptance and God’s love. http://thrive4health.org/
Thrive Picnic/Christmas Party