Oh, what busy fun it has been!
As the summer winds down and we reflect on the bustling (and very very hot) season, we wanted to take a moment and give thanks for the amazing groups we’ve had the pleasure of working with – some old friends, and some new!
A group of interns from Publix Corporate spent a Saturday morning with us, working hard around the warehouse! They loaded supplemental grocery boxes into drivers’ cars, weeded & mulched, cleaned, made birthday cards & bags, and deep cleaned our kitchen. They were delightful and did so much for us!
First Presbyterian Church of Bartow & North Dunedin Baptist Church spent a week doing client outreach with us as part of Student Life Missions Week. Unfortunately, the weather did not want to cooperate with our plans! But they were such troopers and did what good work they could, elements allowing! They were both delightful groups who made our clients feel so cared for and loved.
We have such engaged churches that help us out so often. This summer was further proof of the servant heart our community has. All Saints Episcopal Church organized several projects with us as a part of Soul in the City Mission Week, introducing VISTE & our mission to other Episcopal churches from around Central Florida. They braved the late summer heat to paint clients’ homes! Read more about the week’s events from a participants perspective here!
One day, we were pleasantly surprised when a member of Presbyterian Church in the Highlands brought in a cart full of canned food they had collected during their Vacation Bible School, as part of a team competition. We had no idea they had arranged for it; they did it simply because they wanted to give back!
We are so fortunate to have strong, ongoing partnerships with several teen service groups that are active during the summer months. Thanks to the hard work and fun energy of groups like Camp Fire Sunshine Central Florida, City of Lakeland’s T.A.S.C. (Teen Adventure Service Camp), & Parker Street Ministries Young Adult Program, we were able to tackle several onsite projects as well as some off-site, like cleaning clients’ apartments, and delivering supplemental grocery & personal care boxes!