Brown Bag It on November 20

2016-november-cropped-brown-bagOnce again the children of our Sunday School will decorate shopping bags for the church family to fill, with gratitude, for those who are insecure in providing food for themselves and their families.

On November 20 our sanctuary will be filled with Brown Bags to care for the families and individuals served through Arm in Arm (formerly Crisis Ministry).
Through its three Client Choice Food Pantries, and delivery to the elderly and homebound, Arm in Arm has served more than 4,000 households with high-quality food, nutrition education, and health screening during the last year. More than 40% of its clients are below the age of 17, and 25% are 55 and above. These house-holds have intermittent food insecurity and can “slip between the cracks” of government supports.

Princeton UMC has been walking alongside Arm in Arm since it was formed more than 30 years ago. In addi-tion to providing healthy food to our neighbors in Mercer County, Arm in Arm has stabilized the housing of nearly 700 struggling families by helping with back rent or mortgage, rapid rehousing, security deposit help, utilities back payment, and case management. It also provides job skills and employment readiness
So, be part of the hope and join with your congregation in walking “Arm in Arm” with your community. Pack up your bag, fill it with love, gratitude and non-perishable food (especially heart-healthy, low-fat and sugar free varieties). Bring your Brown Bags of Gratitude to the Sanctuary on November 20 and celebrate the grace of God and the generosity of our church family.
Would your committee or small group like to sponsor its own “Brown Bag” meeting? Great idea! For more information and encouragement, contact LaVerna Albury at 609-658-3830.

Getting our fingernails dirty — close to home

These volunteer opportunities refer to organizations on PUMC’s outreach web page — or speakers at a United Methodist Men’s breakfast within the past two years. Each has current volunteer opportunities. The PrincetonUMC blog has live links to the web pages.

Boy Scouts of the USA.

CASA: Court Appointed Special Advocates: trained volunteers represent children at court.

Contact of Mercer County: compassionate listening, crisis intervention and safety services.

Cornerstone Community Kitchen: meal prep & cleanup, scheduling, sorting clothing.

Crisis Ministry: food pantry, assistance with rent, utilities, medicines: cooking demonstration assistant, and pantry intake helpers.

 A Future with Hope: rebuilding homes and lives after Hurricane Sandy: weeklong construction projects, or donate, or sell tickets to the Thunder game June 9th.

HomeFront : helping homeless families: tutors, computer tech, clerical

Housing Initiatives of Princeton : paint, probono services, advocate for affordable housing.

The HUB: drop-in Saturdays for those with unique challenges: friendly helpers.

Isles: garden docents, organizing IT equipment, event photographer, special projects

Mercer Street Friends: teach computer skills, write tech support or FAQ documents, collect and refurbish computers, one-time parenting workshops like scrapbooking, resume building.

Not in Our Town: an interracial, interfaith social action group, programs vs prejudice.

Princeton Community Housing: affordable rental housing. need PUMC representative.

Princeton Healthcare System: reception, visiting, retail.

Princeton Human Services: help with events like the Wheels Rodeo.

Princeton Senior Resource Center: Visit shut-ins, read to children, assist in office.

Threads of Hope: once monthly Saturdays — sort clothing, offer hospitality

Trenton Area Soup Kitchen: tutor, serve meals on 4th Tuesdays,

Salvation Army of NJ: teach brass instrument, event photographs, registration, teaching.

Urban Promise Trenton: afterschool and camp programs: tutoring, teaching.

Volunteer Connect: nonprofit for skills-based volunteer jobs

Womanspace: residential emergency shelter program for battered women and their children: tutors, Spanish translators, collecting newspaper stories for  grant applications.