Community Service

 

Summer Lunch Program 2017

The summer lunch program is supported and administered by Northend Outreach Ministries which is a group of churches in the north end consisting of Lyons Methodist, Community Congregational, First Congregational, Christ Episcopal and the Sisters of Saint Francis.

The sponsoring 501(c)3 non-profit, under whom we operate, is Community Congregational UCC.

The summer lunch program was open to any children 18 yrs or younger.

Many of the children were brought by their parents, and if there was enough food, the parents were also invited to eat.

This year we served 2,103 children’s lunches

In 2016 we served 1,622. that’s an increase of 481 lunches not counting parents.

In addition to feeding the children we had a table of books donated by Friends of the Library. Books were free for the children to take home.

We had activities after lunch.

There were craft projects on Monday
4H came every week
Mercy Hospital – Healthy Living Projects

We had a seizure dog that could detect epilepsy
Another time sheriff’s therapy dogs
Pigs were a treat – these pigs were named Frank Swinatra and Annie Oinkley
They could shake hands and play the piano – at the end of the program the children were invited to come up and pet the pigs.
There was the day we had Angies chickens
Purina put on a play day again
Lumberkings came one day
The firemen came with the fire truck
Policeman Bill Sattler

Monarch butterfly display – the caterpillar, the cocoon and the butterfly

Volunteers came not just from NOM but from the city at large

We recently learned that 80% of the children in Clinton schools qualify for free or reduced lunch.

Submitted by

Carolyn Brown

PLARNING – MAKING MATS FOR HOMELESS PEOPLE

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plarning with Helma and Addison

PLARN — our newest project

In collaboration with the Sisters of St Francis and Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), members of Christ Episcopal Church have supported the PLARN (plastic yarn project) in Clinton. The Share Our Sandwich program which the Sisters initiated in July, 2014, has grown to offer personal supplies and coats and hats to those in need.

Last year, a woman in Fulton dropped off a mat made of re-purposed plastic grocery bags to one of the sandwich sites. She offered to teach the way to make these mats which are 3×6 feet, either knit or crocheted, for laying between the ground and the sleeping bag of those who are sleeping outside.

Clean plastic bags are used. These bags might otherwise end up polluting highways or the river. More importantly at this time are volunteers who can fold and cut the bags and make “plarn” which is rolled into balls for the knitters and crocheters.

For more information, call Francie Hill 243-0385 or email her at franciehill3@gmail.com.

Helping the Salvation Army

United Music Ministry with Christ Church members Carolyn Brown and Nancy Malli perform for Salvation Army Christmas Kettles  at Paul’s Discount.

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Northend Outreach Ministries

Food Boxes Filled for 2016 Christmas Break

 

 

We are part of a group of churches in the north end of Clinton.  We call ourselves the Northend Outreach Ministries (NOM).  Many of the school children in Clinton qualify for free or reduced-price lunches.  During Thanksgiving, Christmas and spring break there are no meals at school. We began collecting food for 20 families so there would be something for them to eat during these periods.

 

We have also joined in a federal program to feed all the children during the summer months. Word spread in the community and we had 50 volunteers to help – many of whom were not part of our church families. In addition to feeding the children we  provided a book table for them to take books home. One day we invited our hometeam baseball players to lunch with the children and have their pictures taken with them.   On another occasion we had therapy dogs and another time we had a fire engine. Also, people from Nestle came to the food site and put on a playday for the children.  One group was playing games and another had a craft session. This was an especially fun time.

ballplayers
Lumberkings visit lunch site

Monarch butterflies

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About 10 years ago several of our parishioners became aware of the threat of extinction of one of God’s loveliest of creations, the Monarch Butterfly.  Because of the use of pesticides in farming practices as well as in private gardens, milkweed which once grew profusely across our country and on which Monarchs must lay their eggs and feed on during the caterpillar stage, is now very scarce. Couple that with extensive logging of trees in Central America on which the butterflies overwinter, as well as extreme weather conditions such as freezes and tornadoes during their migration northward in the spring their numbers are rapidly dwindling.  In fact, their numbers have decreased by approximately 80%.

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As people are becoming educated as to the plight of these beautiful harbingers of summer Monarch stations in private and public gardens, classrooms, arboretums and family homes can now be found in states throughout the migratory flight patterns.  Iowa is on such a path, and we at Christ Church joined the “army” of Monarch Mavens.

We planted our garden with milkweed and flowers upon which adult butterflies as well as other insect pollinators such as bees would feed, became educated as to the creation of a suitable nursery, the finding of eggs, feeding the newly hatched “cats” throughout their caterpillar growth stages, and finally how to catch and release them after they emerge from their beautiful lime green chrysalis encrusted with tiny golden beads.  Truly a miracle, …..and the joy on the faces of children and adults alike as they share in the process from finding eggs to watching them fly off to find a juicy flower in this big world is thrilling.

If you are interested joining the Monarch recovery

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story go to Monarch Watch for complete information and instructions.  You won’t be sorry and quite possibly, be very blessed as we have been.

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