2016 Annual Report

Hope Full Life Center was busy in 2016! Read this report to learn how our programs served the residents of Ravena and surrounding communities last year. 

 

What is Hope Full Life Center?

  • Hope Full Life Center (HFLC) is the hands-on ministry of Abounding Love Christian Fellowship.

  • The organization assists the needy in Ravena, southern Albany County and around the world through aid programs and economic development initiatives.

  • HFLC is a 501(C)3 not-for-profit corporation founded in 2012.

  • HFLC oversees Helping Harvest, Gracefully Chic Boutique, Peace of Home, Cross Culture Market and the Linda Civill Community Garden. 

  • Mission Statement: Hope Full Life Center empowers people. Activated by compassion, our multi-faceted outreach provides a helping hand, not a hand-out, to improve life for our neighbors.

 

2016 Program Achievements

 

Helping Harvest - A food assistance program for income-eligible individuals and families

  • The program received a steady supply of quality groceries, which improved our ability to serve low-income members of the community and meet our mission. 

  • Thanks to a generous donation from TCI of NY, we were able to purchase fresh produce weekly. 

  • Helping Harvest sent home approximately $181,000 worth of groceries with low-income families in the area. 

  • The food assistance program served nearly 1,000 people in our community.

  • When we had an over-abundance of food we shared it with the Ravena Senior Projects, Teen Challenge, the Capital City Rescue Mission and area food pantry programs. 

  • The Linda Civill Community garden had another successful year with plentiful produce. One new gardener joined the effort. 

 

Gracefully Chic Boutique & Peace of Home - Thrift stores with a mission to serve

  • Gracefully Chic Boutique sold more than 10,000 articles of low-cost clothing.

    • Accepted more than 7,000 pounds of clothing, shoes and accessories. 

  • Peace of Home sold at least 76 pieces of affordable, gently-used furniture.

    • Accepted the equivalent of 58 pickup truck loads of donated furniture and housewares, keeping it out of landfills.  

Together, Peace of Home and Gracefully Chic Boutique

  • Proceeds benefit Helping Harvest, our food assistance program.

  • Assisted 11 area families with emergency needs.

  • Sowed into the Salvation Army, Capital City Rescue Mission, Grace United Methodist’s Book Nook, and Jezreel with its overflow.

 

Cross Culture Market - A Fair Trade Gift Shop

  • Helped to support 21 ministry and humanitarian organization partners and the artisans they work with

     

    through the sale of handmade crafts in our Ravena shop in Faith Plaza, at fairs and festivals, and online. 

  • crossculturemarket.org sales were better than 2015.

  • The program was studied by a Leadership & Development class at Sage College in Fall 2016.

 

Other 2016 Accomplishments

 

Events & Special Projects

  • HLFC hosted its fourth Harvest Fest in conjunction with Abounding Love Christian Fellowship in October, which drew several hundred people. 

  • Cross Culture Market participated in four Fair Trade events during the holiday season and also attended a non-for-profit event at Empire State Plaza. 

  • We welcomed 25 students and several senior citizens from Stars Intergen Corp. for a community service day in November. Every program was bustling with volunteer activity.

 

Volunteers

  • Albany Teen Challenge provided us with help two days a week. We depend on their student’s strong backs and energy to help us with labor intensive projects. 

  • Living Resources, ARC and the Special Education Department at RCS sent student and adult volunteers to assist us each week. 

  • Nearly 50 volunteers working in various capacities in all programs and events helped us achieve success last year.

 

Grants and donations

  • HFLC received grant money from The Bank of Greene County and Stewart’s. We also received donations from Gould Erectors, Port of Coeymans, P&M Brick, TCI of NY, Save A Lot, Tops, Trader Joes and Walmart. 

 

Impact

 

Hope Full Life Center is proud to lend a helping hand to improve life for our neighbors. In addition to giving access to low-cost food, clothing, furniture, housewares and decor to low-income families in the RCS community, we supply a benefit far less tangible - dignity. 

 

At Helping Harvest, Gracefully Chic Boutique and Peace of Home, our staff and volunteers strive to offer clean, friendly, professionally operated stores where customers can make selections to suit their individual tastes and needs. Through modest donations, customers contribute to their well-being and ensure the survival of the programs for others. 

 

Dignity is also a guiding principle at Cross Culture Market where we buy goods from collectives of artisans who are paid a fair wage for the products they make. These people don’t want to accept handouts; instead they earn their way in life and provide for their families. 

 

We are inspired by the people we serve and lean on Matthew 25:35-40 for direction: “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”

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