Monthly Archives

April 2016

Chain Reaction Bike Ministry

April 27, 2016

It was such a blast having First Christian Church & Waterway out to our Bentonville Shelter earlier this month! They are doing some awesome things in the community, and I am going to let Peggy Hicks, Outreach Coordinator, give a little insight into who they are and why they serve!

Tell me a little bit about First Christian Church & Waterway!

First Christian Church & WaterWay are focused on being Disciples of Christ’s love – exemplifying that love to ALL within our walls, our community and our world. We are an inclusive place of worship where everyone is welcome at our table wherever they may be in their journey of life and faith. Reaching out to our community and world with tangible expressions of Christ’s love is a huge part of our calling and identity as followers of Jesus. Our Outreach Ministries play a central role in the life of our church, giving us ways to live into our faith, as well as a means of showing the world what Christ’s love looks like.

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How did you guys get started serving in the community?

Plan Be Sunday was created in 2006 as an opportunity to express that tangible love to our neighbors in need within our community. Each year on the Sunday after Easter, we have an abbreviated time of worship and then go out to Be the church. Over the years, teams of folks have picked up trash in parks, power washed homes in assisted living communities, completed outside lawn work , cleaned the inside of homes, worked at local food pantries and entertained the elderly at local nursing facilities – just to name a few Plan Be acts of service.

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What made you guys choose The Salvation Army?

The Salvation Army Emergency Shelter is one of a very few facilities in Benton County assisting the homeless in offering food, a place to sleep, counseling and referral services. It is a perfect fit for one of our Plan Be team projects this year.

We’re excited to spruce up the outside of the facility. After all, this is a place our neighbors are calling home for a short time while they find their feet again and work toward self-sustainability. Having a home that keeps us safe from the environment, fills our bellies and gives us a place to rest our head is the most important aspect of what that home provides. However, a home that is neat, clean and well taken care of inside and outside also provides us with a sense of peace and contentment; two qualities of living that are often missing from the day to day life of the homeless and qualities those of us not struggling with sustainability often take for granted.

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Tell me a little bit about your bicycle ministry!

Chain Reaction, our Bicycle Outreach Project, began at FCC & WaterWay in June 2015 as part of a larger organization started in Houston, Texas in 2009. Transportation is imperative to those seeking employment, maintaining employment or attending school. Unfortunately, owning a vehicle is costly and public transportation in Northwest Arkansas, although available, isn’t easily accessible or inexpensive. A bicycle not only cuts transportation costs to almost nothing but can cut transportation times to and from work or school by more than 50%.

Simply put, a bicycle can be the difference between working and not working, education or no education.

Our vision for the future of Chain Reaction is that we are able to provide a bike to anyone in need in Northwest Arkansas anytime they need it, as well as providing riding education, safety tips and bicycle repair and replacement.

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Live United Day

April 21, 2016

LU Thank You

Live United Day was such a huge success thanks to the amazing volunteers we had out from Samsclub.com and Fellowship Bible Church in Fayetteville this past weekend! It is such a joy to see people from all walks of life, careers, and cities come together to serve a greater purpose!!

Samsclub.com Bentonville
Our Samsclub.com team deep cleaned our Bentonville Shelter- what champions! They scrubbed baseboards fearlessly, cleaned out greasy ovens cheerfully, and even put some elbow grease into the dorms and bathrooms!

Live United

Fellowship Bible Church Fayetteville
On Saturday we had an amazing team out from Fellowship Bible Church in Fayetteville! Their team never gave up on that massive expanse of fence we had to paint. They stayed 1.5 hours longer than scheduled so that they could finish painting almost 800 feet of fence!! We are so grateful for their hard-work and commitment to making our facility a welcoming place in the community!

Live United Fell

We love this community and we loved the opportunity to serve alongside you guys!!

1 Million Meals Campaign

April 11, 2016

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We are so thrilled to be partnering with Arvest Bank in Fayetteville, Arkansas for
the 6th annual 1 Million Meals Campaign!

The 1 Million Meals Campaign is Arvest’s community development initiative to fight local hunger in the more than 120 communities where they serve! This initiative began in 2011 as an effort to invest in the community.  Each year, Arvest raises money and collects non-perishable food donations that they then give back to partner organizations in the community!
In five years, Arvest has raised 2,566,609 meals in Northwest Arkansas and the River Valley and 7,857,676 meals across all of their communities!!

This year, donations will be accepted from Monday, April 4, through Saturday, May 28.  You can also check out the list of every partner agency in Arkansas and beyond here!

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Pictured Above: Josh Lansdell (Marketing Assistant), Karen Gray (VP Marketing), and Donny Story (CEO & President).

Why this campaign?

When asked why Arvest Bank chooses this initiative each year, Fayetteville, AR Marketing Director Karen Gray explained, “We chose hunger because it’s something that touches each of the more than 120 communities we serve.

Not a single community in our network is immune from families struggling to put food on the table.

The good news is that while such challenges exist, there are local organizations on the ground to help in the fight against hunger!”

And she’s right: hunger is a pervasive issue in our communities.

  • According to the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), in 2014, 17% of American households surveyed reported food hardship, or not having adequate funds to provide enough food for their family.
  • Looking at the USDA’s food insecurity list, the national average for household food insecurity is 14.3%. All four states Arvest serves have considerably higher percentages.  Arkansas (19.9%), Missouri (16.8%), Oklahoma (16.5%), and Kansas (15.9%).  Food insecurity is defined as lacking consistent access to adequate amounts of nutritious food.
  • You can find some more statistics on hunger in our communities –> here.

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Are you particularly passionate about this issue and why?

“I grew up very poor. We didn’t have running water until I was eleven years old. I didn’t realize that was low-income. We were healthy because we had an acre garden and we ate. I was never food deprived, but I had a lot of friends in school that I knew were going hungry.

We didn’t have a whole lot, but my dad would give you the shirt off his back. That’s how it was for my family: you gave to everyone. I was able to overcome it, and I want to help other people to be able to overcome it as well. ”

How can citizens in NW Arkansas give to the 1 Million Meals Campaign?

All Arvest branches will have information on the campaign and will be taking donations of money and non-perishable food!

  • You are able to purchase a pin-up can for $1 at any Arvest branch location. For every one dollar donated, Arvest is able to provide their partner agencies with five meals!
  • Non-perishable food items will be collected at any branch location. Food items will be distributed to local food partners in June!

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Here are some ways you can follow along with the campaign!

Get all the info and updates

  • Check out the 1MM website for information about the campaign, a list of the local food partners and weekly updates on the number of meals raised so far. The Arvest Blog will also be updated frequently with community events and updates!

Like a Post, Donate a Meal

Retweet for Meals

  • On April 15. 2016, and May 13, 2016, @ArvestBank will have a retweet promo: For every retweet on these days, Arvest will donate five meals to support local hunger. Don’t forget to follow @ArvestBank and retweet!

Skip Your Lunch, Give a Meal 

  • Friday, May 13, 2016, will be an awareness day as Arvest encourage associates, customers and citizens of NW Arkansas to skip their lunch and donate the money they would have spent on lunch to the 1 Million Meals campaign.

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Arkansas Gives Day

April 1, 2016

What is ArkansasGive Day-

This year, we have an exciting opportunity to participate in ArkansasGives Day!! This state-wide day of giving, sponsored by the Arkansas Community Foundation, seeks to spread awareness of all the amazing things that non-profits are doing across the state of Arkansas! Though we may focus on different needs and work with different populations, each non-profit participating in this giving day gives lots to their individual communities.

Arkansans (and I suppose residents of any other state!) will be able to unite together and Do the Most Good in Arkansas by supporting the non-profit(s) of their choice. And if that isn’t exciting enough, every donation provides an opportunity for the participating non-profits to receive bonus dollars from a pool of $400,000 donated by First Security Bank!!

Why is ArkansasGive Day-

  1. It is all online and easy to do! Just head over to Arkansasgives.org the day of the event to give!
  2. It supports the great work being done in our state!
  3. Your donation gives us the chance to win BONUS PRIZES! Give more when you give April 7th!
  4. And whether you are giving a little or a lot doesn’t matter! Gifts of all sizes are welcome!!

In fact, it doesn’t take much to make a big difference!

Diagram AR Gives (1)

Where donations AR Gives

To families who need shelter, and men recovering from crippling addictions. To helping those in crisis and reaching hearts that are hurting! The people pictured here are true stories of change! Click on the pictures to read more about their incredible transformations!

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Help  Briand 5

How on ArkansasGive Day-

  • Mark your calendar for April 7th!!
  • Visit their website from 8am-8pm the day of the event.
  • Give to your heart’s content!

We truly cannot serve the community of NW Arkansas without you! So jump on board for ArkansasGives Day! Good things are happening in Arkansas, and you can help the good grow!

Give Here!!

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