It’s not often all the staff and volunteers of Hope Full Life Center are together in one room. Typically, we are spread throughout Faith Plaza in Ravena running our food assistance program, Helping Harvest; our two thrift stores, Gracefully Chic Boutique and Peace of Home, and our international aid program, Cross Culture Market.
Most everyone turns out for our Volunteer Appreciation Dinner in February, however, which gives us a chance to thank each person individually and collectively. It’s a time of fellowship and fun.
This year’s dinner theme, “A World of Thanks,” took our guests on a culinary journey around the globe. We played games and the leadership team sang (a very cheesy and off-key) thank you to the tune of The Beatles’ I Want to Hold Your Hand, which we revised to “we want to shake your hand.”
The Volunteer Appreciation Dinner is also time to reflect on the work we do.
Executive Director Rebecca Flach spoke for a few minutes about the mission of Hope Full Life Center and the people we serve.
“Whether you volunteer in Helping Harvest, one of the thrift stores or Cross Culture Market, we’re serving as the hands and feet of Jesus to people in need,” she said. “Our work makes a difference in the lives of our clients – they tell us so. Our community is better for our presence, and we’re certainly building God’s kingdom.”
Rebecca went on to share some statistics:
Helping Harvest sent home more than $300,000 in groceries with low-income families in the community last year. We help ensure more than 1,000 people have enough to eat.
Gracefully Chic Boutique and Peace of Home recycled thousands of articles of clothing, furniture and home decor pieces, giving these unwanted items new life and keeping them out of area landfills.
Cross Culture Market has purchased upwards of $50,000 worth of merchandise for our shop since 2012. This money has benefited more than 20 ministries and humanitarian organizations around the world and the artisans they seek to keep employed.
More than 50 wonderful people volunteer at Hope Full Life Center in some capacity. Despite the many challenges of the work we do every day we enjoy serving God and our community. If you’re looking for volunteer opportunities in Ravena, we’d be happy to have you join us. Contact Rebecca to learn more. Perhaps we’ll even see you at the 2019 Volunteer Appreciation Dinner!