Our every other week check-in meeting is open to anyone interested in supporting compassionate community response to our most vulnerable neighbors. Meetings are held online every other Thursday from 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Email LeDayne Polaski for Zoom access code. In addition, if you would like to receive notification when these minutes are posted, please subscribe to our newsletter.
Want to learn more about we do on our calls? Watch this short video clip!
Click Here to Access Zoom Recording:
In this Issue:
4/28: FSP's April Book and Supply Drive
4/28: One-stop, in-person early voting period begins
4/30, 6pm: Karen Gonzalez Event at St. John’s Baptist Church
4/30, 12-5pm: Friends and Neighbors Festival, Morning Star Lutheran Church 12509 Idlewild Rd. Matthews NC.
5/4, 6:30 8pm: Resource Fair at International House
5/4, 2:00 pm: DSS and County Resources That You May Not Know Yet
5/10: Deadline to submit an absentee ballot request
5/12, 7:30 am: MeckMIN Awards Breakfast
5/12, 11 am: MeckMIN Community Leader meeting
5/14: One-stop, in-person early voting period ends at 3:00pm
5/15, 1-5 pm: Rotary Club Afghan Picnic - Hunter Farm, Weddington, NC
5/17: Primary Election Day
5/28, 10-11: Pastors for NC Children Education focused call
5/18-20: Welcoming America: GATHERING IN CHARLOTTE
5/19, 12:15: Food for Thought : The Face of Affordable Housing
5/26 -- NO LEADER MEETING
6/9, 11 am: MeckMIN Community Leader meeting
6/15, 10-11 am: Pastors for NC Children Education focused call
6/23-26: In Our Own Backyard Camp
7/14-17: S4TL – Rotary Leadership Camp
7/18: Applications due for National Fund for Sacred Places grant
7/20, 10-11: Pastors for NC Children Education focused call
8/27: Another Chance House of Refuge 5K run, “Racing Through ReEntry”.
9/11, 1-6pm: Sacred Threads Conference
By Sherry Waters, email@example.com, Stewardship Coach & Practitioner, www.ienate.com, (704) 999-2537
LeDayne and Beloved Community, thank you for inviting me to this sacred space of community stewards today. I’m a fellow trustee of this diverse community for 30 years now.
I’m a mother, a wife, a friend, a sister, a daughter – and for several years now a souljourneyer as a community chaplain, serving at The Pauline Tea-Bar Apothecary. At the teabar, I was led by Spirit to curate a space that allowed people permission to unplug, sip tea and just listen – something that is increasingly becoming countercultural.
You see, texting is less vulnerable than speaking to a person in real time. It’s easier to scroll through social media and being a disengaged spectator than just being still and savoring the moment. As I’m currently reading The Cultivated Life by Susan Phillips, she writes that “listening and its visual form of beholding, maintain the life-giving connections we need in order to flourish.”
So how are you listening these days?
If you’re willing, inhale deeply.
Find within yourself a space of silence. Pay attention to the core of your heart. Center on this space of surrender for a still moment. Embrace this gift of yielding and listening to the Divine, Spirit and Ancestors. And consider why you’re here. What needs to be beholden when you leave this sacred space this day? Where can you offer empathic connection?
As we souljourney in this time of reflection, listen to the sounds around you.
Attune to your heart, listening to the genuine sustenance there. Note the noise and distractions of your mind, the pandemonium of your life leaking into your thoughts. Feel no judgment; no condemnation. Allow this time to be thoughtful silence. Just listen. Focus.
May we know the peace of the Divine.
Listen to the silent guidance of Spirit.
And encounter the true belonging of Love.
I declare this time a divine sacred time of purpose, as you each are imagebearers.
Let us take seriously the solemn responsibility of stewarding all that we have been given.
our creative abilities,
1. MeckMIN Updates
AWARDS BREAKFAST |
We have had a great response to the Awards Breakfast sponsorships and ticket sales! THANK YOU! As of this moment, the room is completely sold out. That's good news! There's even more good news -- we have the ability to livestream the event so you can still step up as a sponsor or register to come as an attendee. Virtual sponsors and attendees will enable us to reach the financial goal that is crucial to our continued work. It is possible that a few physical spaces will open up (if, for instance, an existing sponsor chooses to use some of their tickets for virtual seats.) If you really want to be in the room, you can join the waiting list when you sign up.
Visit www.meckmin.org for virtual sponsorships or tickets
We are in need of some volunteers to help us set up, decorate, greet, troubleshoot, register attendants, serve food, and clean up before the event, during, and after the event. https://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080948acab29a5fc1-awards
The Date: Thursday May 12th at 7:30 am in person at Covenant Presbyterian his is the biggest MeckMIN fundraiser of the year. If the work that MeckMIN is doing matters to you, please sponsor a table or buy individual tickets.
Tickets are going fast! Get yours! The deadline to become a sponsor is April 30. Seats are selling fast – buy yours today to be certain of having a seat!
FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
We invite you to join us for the last remaining Food for Thought event before our summer break.
May 19 – 12:15 pm -- Affordable Housing Stories We will hear the stories of those who live in some of the affordable housing highlighted in an earlier Food for Thought event.
IN OUR OWN BACKYARD (IOOBY) | June 23-26 | Applications Open
SAVE THE DATE: JUNE 23-26, 2022
We will once again host our acclaimed interfaith youth camp.
Every year we hold our interfaith summer camp experience for high-school aged youth in Mecklenburg County. The purpose of the camp is to bring youth together from different faiths, races, cultures and socioeconomic backgrounds to learn more about each other’s faith traditions and to serve area residents in need. Participants visit various social agencies, visit different houses of faith for worship services and develop their own interfaith service on the last evening of the program. PLEASE SHARE WITH ANY HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT YOU THINK MIGHT BE INTERESTED.
Please help us spread the word by sharing the webpage on your social media accounts and within your personal networks
2. Community Information - Covid and other
CONTINUUM OF CARE
Erin Nixon, MSW, LCSW, Sr. Social Services Manager-Continuum of Care
Housing Innovation, Strategy & Alignment, Mecklenburg County,
Office: (980) 314-8923, Cell: (704) 497-8700, firstname.lastname@example.org
Anna London, email@example.com, Chair of Continuum of Care
Continuum of care is collaboration responsible for ending homelessness in Charlotte. 20-member board. 6 committees and ad-hoc work groups that work on the issue. Focused right now on issues that include: Landlord engagement (increasing the number willing to receive vouchers), coordinated entry system, data on disparities. All the meetings are open to the public so please join at website, sign up for newsletters. Trying to increase involvement and engagement with faith-based organizations. They want to have discussions about how to best partner with you on this issue. Reach out to Erin Nixon and Branden Lewis to connect with this effort.
Autumn Watson, Mecklenburg County Department of Health, MPH, REHS
Sr. Health Manager Community Outreach | COVID-19 Unit, C: 704-621-5181 www.meckhealth.org
1. Test to Treat program The Federal Government has launched this program nationwide. It allows individuals to be tested and, if at high risk, receive antivirals all in one visit to the pharmacy (current participants in our area are select CVS pharmacies and Walgreens is launching within the next couple of weeks).
2. A Covid-19 treatment was authorized by the FDA this past week for children aged 28days and at least 7lbs. This is the first treatment authorized for children under 12 and is applicable to high-risk children who contract Covid-19.
3. Emphasis on testing and treatment options. Antivirals are only effective within the first 5 days of symptom onset.
4. Community metrics are rising with 2 of our 5 wastewater treatment locations showing high levels of covid-19 in samples (70-100% of samples). All genotypes variants have come back as Omicron B.A.2 as of this week.
5. Would you like for a public health professional to come and speak to your group about public health or covid-19? Visit www.meckhealth.org and click on the community engagement request form!
CMS: COMMUNITY CONVERSATIONS NEW MAGNET SCHOOLS
Marquitta Mitchell, Magnet Programs Specialist, Office: 980-343-5030, firstname.lastname@example.org
CMS is setting up small group conversations to capture community input on hopes and concerns for two new CMS magnet schools: Lincoln Heights Elementary and E.E. Waddell High Schools. As a trusted community leader, CMS would value your help in recruiting conversation participants from your networks, especially to surface voices of members who don't usually participate in such initiatives. Please invite them to register for a conversation here: http://bit.ly/CMSconversations. Let CMS know if you would like access to sample messaging in English or Spanish. You can find more information about the schools here:https://cmschoice.org/future-magnet-schools/. Please visit the website, contribute your thoughts and invite others. Future Waddell and Lincoln email addresses go directly to Marquitta. June 28th is the Board vote on the magnet programs that will be implemented at these schools.
3. Non-Profit Updates
Knoble, Karen, KarenK@generationsatshalompark.com
Generations at Shalom Park is the new culturally Jewish senior living community that will be built on the grounds of Shalom Park. It is a non-profit community built in partnership with Aldersgate Life Plan Services. It will operate with a “Jewish heart” but is open to people of all faiths and backgrounds, as is Shalom Park. The goal is to create a diverse community of residents. Generations at Shalom Park will be built adjacent to Shalom Park and will consist of 125 independent living apartment homes and 16 memory support apartments. It will offer a uniquely multigenerational experience and easy access to the amenities of the Levine JCC, as well as opportunities for volunteerism, and educational and spiritual offerings throughout the Jewish community.
The 125 independent living apartments are being developed and designed around the concept of aging in residence, which will enable residents to remain in their homes for as long as possible. The unique design features of Generations enable aging in residence and its affiliation with Aldersgate, Generations will offer a full continuum of care for its residents. Amenities will include full membership to the Levine JCC, covered underground and secure parking, all day dining, and more. Find more information and renderings of the project on the Generations website at www.generationsatshalompark.com.
Where does the project stand?
· The NC Department of Insurance governs Senior Living facilities and because this is a non-profit, we can’t begin building Generations until we receive deposits on 70% of the independent living units.
· We are currently taking deposits. – Tell your friends about what we are doing.
PASTORS FOR NC CHILDREN
Rev. Suzanne Parker Miller, Executive Director, PastorsForNCchildren@gmail.com 919-346-6114 (Office), 919-815-7861 (cell/text), Schedule a Meeting with Suzanne: https://calendly.com/pncc
Pastors for NC Children hosts monthly Leaders Gatherings on Zoom for anyone interested in conversations around faith and supporting public schools. These gatherings are for any clergy, faith leaders, education advocates, or anyone interested in learning more about PNCC. These informal gatherings are a chance for leaders from across the state to meet, share announcements and updates about NC education, the Leandro Case, and how we as people of faith can support children’s education. They are now on the 3rd Wednesday of the month from 10-11am.
· Wednesday, April 20, 10-11am
· Wednesday, May 18, 10-11am
· Wednesday, June 15, 10-11am
· Wednesday, July 20, 10-11am
Register in advance for this meeting: (Link is the same each month, so you only need to register once.) After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
Mission Amplify is a letter-writing campaign to support public schools. Faith Communities and local community groups are invited to participate in writing letters (postcards) 6x during the year to as NC legislators to support public schools across NC. Guidance for writing and topic information is provided to the groups by Pastors for NC Children pastorsforncchildren.org, and all topics are in support of the Comprehensive Remedial Plan from the Leandro v. NC court case everychildnc.org that began in 1994 to ensure all NC children receive equitable educational opportunities. To sign up and learn more, visit: https://linktr.ee/mission_amplify .
DSS AND COUNTY RESOURCES THAT YOU MAY NOT KNOW YET
Rupp, Jennifer Jennifer.Rupp@mecklenburgcountync.gov
The DSS/ County outreach team will be hosting a virtual session on 5/4 @ 2PM to share information on the myriad of resources that the county and others offer. Employment, childcare, elder care, weatherization, and many others will be covered. All are invited to attend. Teams link: Click here to join the meeting
Just did this event for their own employees. We hope you will join and share the resource with others. If you want DSS to come to one of YOUR events, reach out to Jennifer.
LIVING ARCHIVE PROJECT
Debbie Rubenstein, 704.998.9579, email@example.com
Living Archives is three-year initiative to gather, preserve and share local histories—stories, documents, visual imagery and memories—about the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on Black, Hispanic, Asian, Indigenous and other minority communities in Mecklenburg County. The project is a collaboration between the Library, JCSU, The Levine Museum and the Duke Center for Documentary Studies.
Narratives, art, song and more will be collected in a digital archive to be preserved for future generations as we work toward a more equitable future. The stories and materials collected through the Living Archive Project will be open-sources so they can be shared through exhibit, presentations and more in the future.
DANYA'S CLEANING SERVICE
Cade Barefoot, firstname.lastname@example.org
Kieley Wilson, email@example.com
The speaker for April’s food for thought is waiting for her asylum case. Hiring her as a cleaner is a great way to support her as she goes through the process. Contact the church to set this up.
Zach Surber | Faith Relations Manager Habitat for Humanity of the Charlotte Region
980.859.5578 (office) | 612.425.8225 (mobile)
Habitat is hiring a Faith Relations Intern! This 9-week summer internship will help our faith program be more inclusive, assist in outreach, and learn some fantastic skills in nonprofit management. The position pays $14/hour for about 27 hours per week, May 24th – July 26th. We hope to have applications in by May 14th, so please apply soon!
Our application portal can be found here: https://www.paycomonline.net/v4/ats/web.php/jobs/ViewJobDetails?job=79551&clientkey=B9AEBEEC5E3A8BA881D7206574ECB329
Additionally, our Advocacy team is setting up some focus groups to discuss an upcoming ‘advocacy curriculum’ for residents in Mecklenburg and Iredell counties. The curriculum will teach volunteers how to be advocates for affordable housing using Habitat’s knowledge and mission as a guide. We’re looking to have one or two faith-based focus groups to provide a congregation and faith leadership perspective. I also thought you’d bring really valuable experience in the realm of interfaith, as well as your wealth of knowledge of being a good advocate.
The focus group would be just 90 minutes on one evening in June, likely during the week, depending on the availability of participants. If you’re at all interested, just let me know!
HOUSING RESOURCE LIST
Lauren Rogers, Volunteer and Outreach Manager
704-333-8099 ext. 110
May is Mental Health Awareness month, and International House is planning a special presentation to address the stress and anxiety that we’re seeing amongst the immigrant and refugee communities living here in Charlotte. Resettling in a new country can be a traumatic and overwhelming time for new families, especially when the conflict that caused them to flee is still on-going. Through a collaboration with Hope Community Clinic, we’re looking forward to hosting a Mental Health and Wellness Workshop next week at IH to provide resources for foreign-born community members and the volunteers, caseworkers, family members, and friends who support them. It will take place in-person on Wednesday, May 4th from 6:30-8 PM at International House (1817 Central Ave.). You can find a flyer attached to this email, along with a QR code for folks to register. Please feel free to forward this email along to any of your staff, volunteers, clients, or congregation members that might like to attend.
If you’re interested in attending, you can register on our website here: https://www.ihclt.org/events-1/mental-health-and-wellness-workshop
If your business or organization provides mental health services (counseling, support groups, wrap-around family services, etc.) and you’d like to share information about your programs with attendees, please let Lauren know. There will be tables with brochures, flyers, etc. with information about community resources and health programs available for those who need them.
Becky Schisler, Executive Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
Compassion Closet is a community program under The Coalition for Cultural Compassion, a local 501c3 organization. This program is open to anyone in the Charlotte region if they are in need of free clothing, shoes, household goods, diapers, and hygiene items. Compassion Closet is completely volunteer and donation driven and strives to combat systems of oppression through the redistribution of resources and by promoting awareness and understanding of systemically rooted inequities.
Although Compassion Closet hopes to become a community partner of the new Charlotte branch of the NC Diaper Bank this summer, right now they are experiencing extremely low diaper inventory and are seeking donations. Monetary donations can be made via PayPal to email@example.com or by clicking the DONATE button on their website: www.culturalcompassion.org. Diapers can also be sent directly via Amazon using this wishlist link: https://tinyurl.com/3ncd3cyw To donate gently used donate clothing/shoes (all sizes) or other items, please email Becky at firstname.lastname@example.org for a list of drop off locations.
FREEDOM FIGHTER MISSIONARIES
Having their second backpack fundraiser. Reach out to Kenneth Robinson to bring items for donation to backpacks. Backpacks are donated to detention center and they are donated to those leaving detention who have completed prep course. They are homeless and being released with no where to go. The backpacks have some basics to help them with the transition out of detention.
Kenny Robinson <email@example.com>
CHARLOTTE PANTHERS FOUNDATION GRANT IS OPEN FOR APPLICATION!
The Charlotte Panthers Charities Grants program is open for application to nonprofits. Funding is available to nonprofit agencies in North and South Carolina whose missions and programs address the needs of youth. The maximum grant amount offered through the Carolina Panthers Charities grant process is $10,000. One-time projects or ongoing projects are eligible for funding. Priority consideration is given to projects that are sustainable. Must be submitted by May 15th.
MEDASSIST JOB OPENING
Dalya – SBG firstname.lastname@example.org
They are executive recruiters and they are searching for new ED at MEDAssist. Only statewide non-profit pharmacy in NC. Based in Charlotte. Provide over-the-counter medications and more. Ideal ED may come via non-profit or corporate. Accepting inquiries on behalf on candidates are confidential. Job posting attached.
LEADING ON OPPORTUNITY COMMUNITY CONVERSATIONS
See attached flyer – May 2, May 3, May 16
4. General Information
If you personally, or your organizations are interested in attending The Mass Poor People's and Low Wage Workers' Assembly and March to the Polls in Washington DC please visit www.poorpeoplescampaign.org/june18
If you want to learn more about coalition work happening in NC to support the Leandro Plan and educational equity, check out EveryChildNC.org
Although Compassion Closet hopes to become a community partner of the new Charlotte branch of the NC Diaper Bank this summer, right now they are experiencing extremely low diaper inventory and are seeking donations. Monetary donations can be made via PayPal to email@example.com or by clicking the DONATE button on their website: www.culturalcompassion.org. Diapers can also be sent directly via Amazon using this wishlist link: https://tinyurl.com/3ncd3cyw
To donate gently used donate clothing/shoes (all sizes) or other items, please email Becky at firstname.lastname@example.org
Seniors from ethnic populations are not able to pay rents and heading towards situations like homelessness, there has to be a co- housing or group homes allowed by City or Advocacy for such lonely seniors is important, we as community need to start conversation how to handle it before it is out of control. Uisac.org is help seniors but they do have high self pride and do not discuss openly.
Marquitta Mitchell, CMS School Choice/Magnet Programs - Opening 2 new magnet schools Fall 2023. Share your hopes, concerns & ideas here: https://cmschoice.org/future-magnet-schools/
ADDITIONAL FLYERS AND DOCUMENTS OF INTEREST
Call For Artists - The Journey Art Exhibit & Competition
Mecklenburg Parent Teacher Association County Council
Executive Board & Board of Directors
PRAYER FOR NONPROFIT LEADERS
Do your little bit of good where you are. It is those little bits of good together that overwhelm the world.
- Desmond Tutu