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Christ Church Outreach News: April 11, 2024


Have Fun and Help Feed the Hungry at Our Spring Food Drive on Saturday, April 20, 12-4 PM, at River Hill Giant Supermarket in Clarksville

Be a part of one of the most rewarding ways to help feed the hungry in Howard County. Please sign up for a shift during the Spring Food Drive on Saturday, April 20, from noon to 4 p.m., at River Hill Giant, 6050 Daybreak Circle, Clarksville, Md., 21075.  Walk-ins and children are welcome as Christ Church continues a hands-on, family-friendly activity that occurs twice a year, in spring and fall.


Groceries collected will go to two food pantries. One is the Howard County Food Bank, which is operated by the Community Action Council of Howard County (CAC). The other is SAFE, its partner pantry that provides free gluten-free and allergy-safe foods to low-income families and individuals. The need is great among struggling households, due to inflation and other causes. In 2023, our Spring and Fall Food Drives collected slightly more than a ton (2,268 pounds) of food for the two pantries.


At the supermarkets, it’s clear we are doing God’s work. Volunteers wearing Christ Church aprons or T-shirts engage arriving shoppers and offer a reusable shopping bag that displays Old Brick and contact information. We ask that they purchase items on a list that the Outreach Commission prepares in collaboration with the Food Bank and SAFE. The newly-motivated customers then shop, a grocery list in hand, returning later with canned goods, boxes of cereal, pasta, and more. 


On Sunday, look for a signup sheet in the Narthex or on the table in Old Brick, and to volunteer or request information, please email outreach@christchurchcolumbia.org.



 


Christ Church Hosts a Potluck for FISH Leaders and Volunteers

At a potluck dinner held on April 7 at Christ Church, FISH of Howard County celebrated its participants who have kept the all-volunteer organization running since 1976. Parishioner Andy DeLong, who volunteers as the treasurer of FISH, told the group that it has managed to keep overhead at 4 percent. That means that 96 percent of all direct contributions go to client services.


FISH helps county residents in crisis by providing emergency food, referral information, and limited financial assistance for such things as eviction and utility turnoff prevention and medicine. Food aid is typically a 7-to-10-day supply that is delivered to the home. In 2023, that amounted to 3,000 meals. It also offers hygiene, paper, and laundry supplies.


Christ Church, acting through the Outreach Commission, has long supported FISH in various ways. Many of you regularly put non-perishables into the basket at the altar or in its marked yellow bin on the breezeway between the Parish Hall and Old Brick. Please keep it up, and thank you for helping our neighbors in need!


Christ Church was represented by members of Outreach and the Vestry at the event, which was a special occasion to honor the couple who founded FISH and continue as leaders. Carroll and Fran Kitzmiller received commendations from the Maryland General Assembly and Howard County.

A certificate signed by County Executive Calvin Ball was presented to the Kitzmillers by Paul Thompson, Director of Constituent Services and Community Partnerships for Howard County. The state citation was signed by Delegate Courtney Watson and presented by FISH webmaster Linda Hayes who, more than a decade ago, directed our former referral service called Christ Church Link. FISH has displayed photos of the occasion in its gallery.


Fran Kitzmiller reported to the group that the FISH pantry will be relocating shortly from a county-owned building on Patuxent Woods Drive to a site selected by the county in Long Reach Village Center. 


 


CCC Gets A New Look, Better Online Access for Volunteers and People in Need

Columbia Community Care (CCC) announced last week on the CCC Facebook Group that it has adopted a new logo, saying it “reflects our commitment to community support, growth, and inclusivity.”


An updated CCC website provides information to those who need groceries and other necessities. Find times and locations of three Saturday distribution sites by going online to the “I Need Help” portion of CCC’s website. Or learn how to volunteer at the sites or in other ways by visiting the “I Can Help” portion of its website.


Please continue to collect diapers, baby wipes, sanitary and personal care items, and adult diapers for CCC. Sizes 4-6 are in the greatest demand, as are 3T-4T and 4T-5T pullups. Put items in the yellow bin, marked “CCC,” inside the Parish Hall. Drop off items on weekdays when the church office is open or on Sundays. The Christ Church point of contact is Leigh Smith, who monitors the bin and delivers its contents.


 


Lake Elkhorn Middle School Needs Your Help

Lake Elkhorn Middle School will be inviting families to two workshops this spring to support them in the challenging job of being parents. Tracey Williams, the counselor at LEMS, has asked Christ Church to supply a dinner for the families and provide childcare during the workshops. The first workshop is Wednesday, April 10th, and the second is Tuesday, May 14th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm in the cafeteria.


We need adults and high school students who can serve food to all and play games with the children, ages Kindergarten to 8th grade. Please contact Deacon Denise deacondenise@christchurchcolumbia.org or Cathy Whittaker catharinewhittaker@gmail.com if you can help on either or both of these dates.


 


Enjoy Food and Drink to Help Support DreamBuilders!

Come join us at Bushel & Peck restaurant in Clarksville, MD on Wednesday, May 15th from 4-9 p.m. for an evening of dining, refreshments, and fellowship in support of DreamBuilders. In June of this year, DreamBuilders will be building three homes in Hazard, Kentucky, and a portion of the proceeds from your meals and drinks will go directly toward funding the materials for these three homes. More details to come…


 


In general, if you have suggestions about ways to help the community, if you want to get involved, or if you need assistance, please email Christ Church Outreach at outreach@christchurchcolumbia.org. Your help is greatly welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.


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