Saturday, July 05, 2008

The Next Step for our Homeless Men

Well, good news. We've got our homeless men housed. The Three Homeless of Old First, plus three more who have to Old First asking for help. Thanks to Common Ground, and the city's Department of Homeless Services, we've got a little thing going. Hooray.

But, here's the next step: Frying Pans. Curtains. Tea Towels. Dishes. Napkins. You know, the ordinary things, the personal touches that turn a house into a home.

So, the Park Slope Coalition for the Homeless is working on the next step. The Coalition includes Old First, Congregation Beth Elohim, the Park Slope Civic Council, and some neighbors.

Here’s how it works. Common Ground has selected ten clients (including the three who used to live on the steps of Old First) to receive housewarming care packages. Common Ground will help the clients with their wish lists (dishes, linens, bath accessories, small kitchen appliances, etc.). Once they finish the wish lists, it's our turn to get to work.

First, we’ll collect donated items on the wish lists, from now through July 27. Next, we’ll have volunteers work with the DHS to gather the donations and package them for delivery to the clients, and then deliver them, starting at the beginning of August.

For personal items, we'll help the clients choose their own items. They'll get gift cards to use at a the store of their choice. We'll need volunteers to assist the clients on their shopping trips, accompanied by a staff member from Common Ground or DHS.

Won’t you join us in this exciting opportunity to help our less fortunate neighbors? You can sign up with us at our coffee hour after church on Sundays. Or you can call the church office and leave your name and contact information. 718-638-8300.

(This was written by Pat Caldwell and Pastor Meeter)

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Summer Concerts at Old First

Theresa Levin, a member of Old First, has organized this summer evening concerts. They're free, and the church doors will be open to the street. Walk in, stay as long as you like, and enjoy the music.