In December, we participated in the Good Giving Challenge with 120 other non-profit organizations. We received close to $9,000 toward serving communities in need. Thank you so much to everyone who contributed! Our director Andy Bathje lived in a shack for a week to draw attention to the challenges of marginalized people, especially in these cold winter months. This provided a great opportunity to raise awareness for these issues in our community and encourage people to support good works organizations. Andy interviewed the directors of multiple partner agencies that we coordinate with to discuss how they are addressing various issues that people living on the margins face. You can check out these filmed conversations on our Facebook page! We want to recognize the following business that sponsored the ASM Shack this year: The Agency Real Estate, Stockton Mortgage, Auto Alternative, First Southern National Bank, Wade’s Barbershop, and Zilis CBD Sales.
Under normal circumstances, we participate in our town's annual Christmas Festival during the Good Giving Challenge fundraising week. However, it was canceled due to the pandemic so we made alternate plans and coordinated an outdoor “Community Serve”. A fire had recently damaged the property of Anthony Yoder, a Wilmore resident. He was unable to clean the site due to physical disability and limited funds. We recruited 13 volunteers through our High School Apprenticeship Program and A.R.R.O.W., a local substance abuse recovery group. Wilmore Free Methodist Church gave a donation toward the project’s expenses. The diverse and dedicated group finished the project in 3 hours! We hauled away 5 truckloads of debris and cleaned the entire area! Anthony was so excited!
We set out to complete this "Community Serve" initiative without assurance of funding but felt it was important to help a community member. The project also fell on the date of our annual Christmas meal fundraiser. However, since the meal was canceled due to covid protocols, it served as the perfect replacement activity. It took a lot of work and multiple staff members to coordinate, yet it turned out to be a great success. In a sense, we acted in faith that God would bless our service. God's providence was received through the Wilmore Free Methodist Church donation, the many Good Giving donors that week, Anthony's genuine gratitude, and the goodwill between volunteers that day.