Our weekly check-in meeting is open to anyone interested in supporting compassionate community response to our most vulnerable neighbors in this time of crisis. Meetings are held online every Thursday from 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Please email LeDayne Polaski for Zoom access code. We look forward to seeing you!
Prayer, from Sofia Wolman, Jamaica Plain Baptist Church
I pray that we:
Maintain faith, hope, and connection;
Respond to these challenges and fear with integrity and creativity;
Resist the temptations of stigma, isolation, or hopelessness;
Promote, protect, and preserve the health, safety, well-being, and highest good of all involved; and
Build and practice our community and collective capacities to care for all life in this moment and into the future.
Know that you are loved, and be at peace.
Partnership with County:
Liz Clasen-Kelly reported on the county’s response to the signed letter.
Request for sanitation stations in the community for use by the unhoused: 12 sanitation stations with Port-o-johns and handwashing stations were placed in the community on Tuesday. Placement was dictated by community activists who have trusted relationships with the homeless community These will be cleaned 1x or 2x/day. Costs for regular cleaning are extensive and so there is gratitude that the County partnership makes this effort possible.
Request that law enforcement desist from breaking up homeless encampments: We have received no reports of encampments being disturbed though there are still homeless receiving citations for sleeping in the open uptown. This is being addressed.
Request for enforcement of stay of evictions for people living long-term in hotels. See elsewhere in these minutes for a report on that ongoing effort.
Request for 120 additional hotel rooms for most at-risk unhoused. There is no definitive solution yet but the idea is taking shape. Urban Ministry and Salvation Army have offered to staff the hotels and it looks like the start number will be more like 70 rooms. Additional volunteers will be needed from the community to assist with meals. MeckMIN will coordinate the volunteers.
VOLUNTEER NEEDS: 4 volunteers per day needed. 2 would staff a lunch shift from 10-12 and 2 would staff a dinner shift from 2:30 -5. Volunteers would work at the hotels and help prep and deliver meals. Work is low – touch, limited interaction. MeckMIN is looking for people who can commit to a regular shift, once or twice a week for, likely, several weeks.
IDEA: Connect with CharMeck Responds for the volunteers. There was agreement that pursuing that lead might be fruitful. Also, working with FORCLT to bring in additional faith communities. There was general agreement that it would not be difficult to staff this request.
If your congregation is willing to open up one worship service to host interfaith visitors, please let LeDayne know. Information that we will need:
Information about how to join the service
Designate a day for the visit
Welcome interfaith visitors at the beginning of the service
Share anything else that you think visitors should know or be mindful of.
Awardees are being notified and an announcement will be made soon.
Date: May 27th , 7:30 a.m. Facebook live event
To know: Money from ticket sales and sponsorships will be divided between MeckMIN and Loaves and Fishes so it is a “virtual breakfast for us, an actual one for families served by Loaves and Fishes”
NEED TABLE SPONSORS. It is $500 for full table for 8; $250 for 1/2 table. Sponsorships support MeckMIN in doing such work as pulling together these weekly meetings. A portion of each will also be donated to Loaves and Fishes.
Community Link: Harold Rice Jr: email@example.com.:
Community Link enables individuals and families to obtain and maintain affordable housing. They operate in 27 counties in NC and 3 in SC but they are based in Charlotte. They are currently practicing social distancing by conducting virtual home visits, using InstaCart for food delivery and both are working well. They have housed 2 families in the last two weeks. They need two things:
Additional people to help with tax preparation. They are looking for people who have passed the IRS exam and can offer virtual help to families with household income of 55K or less.
Suggestion made: Explore a partnership with Loaves and Fishes for the food. They have a surplus right now and have a good distribution system with their mobile banks.
With the help of the community they have successfully raised the money to fund the rest of the OurBridge lunch project.
Current needs are for diapers, wipes and formula. PLEASE DO NOT DONATE FORMULA, however. It expires quickly. Please donate money which can be used to buy formula as needed. Diapers and wipes may be donated (Nikola’s address is: 14002 Mareshead Lane, Matthews, NC 28105) but the preferred donations are cash via CashApp by Square One (user name: $NikolaZTaylor) or gift cards to Sam’s Club, Target or Walmart.Leftover baby supplies will be donated to Loaves & Fishes which has supported all of their families with food in this crisis. A HUGE thank you to them.
Questions can be directed to either Nikola Taylor firstname.lastname@example.org Marsha Kelly email@example.com.
Suggestion made: LeDayne put a request for diapers and wipes out on her neighborhood Facebook page and got an enormous response. Others might have similar success.
Suggestion made: Dollar General allows you to buy in bulk and have it delivered on a regular schedule – canned goods, diapers, etc. Might be a useful resource.
Suggestion: Lots of diapers and wipes were available at Second Harvest this week.
We are continuing to advocate for testing
We are still evaluating how our organization might need to adapt to a new expectation of social distancing, including congregant set ups, shelters, the use of hotels and more.
We continue to appreciate and need continued donation of sandwiches.
We are encouraging people to donate all or a portion of their stimulus checks to support our work. Our goal was 30 donors and we are halfway there.
Food donations needed for food packages for neighbors. You can read updates on activities and needs at tinyurl.com/neighborupdate.Baskets with additional food are low. We are referring to Loaves and Fishes if needed but visits are part of our practice so donations are needed.
We are getting produce from community gardens and more would be welcome.
20 mobile locations in operation, serving up to 500 people in most mobiles. They have plenty of slots available for those in need.
To make referrals:https://loavesandfishes.org/how-to-make-a-client-referral-to-loaves-fishes/
There is online training available for referrals for priority referral partners (people or groups who regularly make a lot of referrals).
They are seeing 3x the normal number of referrals every week.
Each person who is referred gets a nutritionally balanced non-perishable food box with a week’s worth of food AND, for now, fresh food and dairy like cantaloupe, milk, pork, apples, and more.
Diapers and wipes are also available but please let L&F know that that referred family will need diapers and wipes to ensure that they will be available in the correct sizes.
Masks that Fran Cook-Mahood provided were welcome and helpful. More are coming in and more yet would be useful.
Serving M,F at 11 and using a food insecurity grant to hand out extra lunches for people on the block.
Began a partnership with CMS to deliver meals as well.
Providing 100 meals every week to SouthSide housing project
Working with Community Hub 1245 in North Charlotte to provide meals.
Also supporting local restaurants by providing meals from them to Atrium and Novant staff.
Please contact Dilworth Soup Kitchen if you want to partner.
Jolin Wilks McElroy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Working remotely to protect the 500 people who come through the facility each week normally.
Working on stopping evictions. They were seeing over 100 eviction per/day but that number has dropped to closer to 10.
Working in hotels. They put a stop to 1200 evictions from hotels with the help of staff and the attorney general.
25% of all apartment dwellers were unable to pay rent as of April 1. Monies owed simply accrue when evictions are halted so the Crisis Assistance team is working on a plan to meet that enormous coming need. The current stay on evictions ends on June 1, 2020.
They will send out a call for help and support soon with specifics.
First Baptist Church West: Charlotte Clergy Coalition for Justice: Glencie Rhedrick
They worked with ActionNC on the Days Inn evictions. Those evicted have been able to move back in. Water and electricity are back on. They are working to find permanent housing for the 16-18 families who are left there. They are also reaching out to the parent company of Days Inn to let them know what happened and explore allowing the families to stay in the hotel until the stay-at-home order is lifted.
EMAIL REPORTS FROM GROUPS UNABLE TO ATTEND THE MEETING:
Deborah Woolard From Black Love:
They are serving regular meals to people who are unsheltered. They daily find people living outside without even a tent – and they also find people whose tents are damaged beyond repair – so they looking for additional tents to give to those in need of portable shelter. Used tents in good shape are welcome or new ones can be purchased for less than $30 each.
Deborah Woolard email@example.com
Refugee Support Services
Refugee Support Services is so grateful to the support from the community to help 115 families get food and educational packets for their families yesterday – some by home-delivery to those who are home-bound.
CMS Lunches for families with children
2 pop up tents to continue serving in case of rain
Weekly drivers to pick up eggs in Salisbury and deliver to our Help Center
Donations on Wednesday via our sign up genius: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/409044fa4a82ca7f94-wednesday1
Contact the RSS Help Line for questions: (980) 263-9334
Lionel Lee Jr. Center for Wellness (LLCW) – Sonja Lee firstname.lastname@example.org
Lionel Lee Jr. Center for Wellness (LLCW) is assisting people in high risk groups during the Covid-19 pandemic. Specifically, we are providing the following services to seniors, people with underlying illnesses, and people with disabilities who are challenged with shopping for their basic needs. Most do not have transportation; others are afraid to expose themselves in public places such as grocery stores, schools, or other locations that are providing services.
We have identified 23 families in need of immediate support: Their needs include non-perishable food items, cleansing/sanitizing products, and personal hygiene products. Our team is shopping and delivering supplies to our neighbors in need. You can assist by donating:
– Canned vegetables, fruit, soup
– Pasta, spaghetti sauce, Alfredo sauce
– Oatmeal, Cream of Wheat, Grits
– Soap, Shampoo, toothpaste, tooth brushes
– Gift cards for Walmart, CVS, Walgreens (our team will shop)
Cash donations can be made via PayPal on our website at http://www.LLCWellness.org
or by Cash App at $LLCWellness2
I can be reached at (704) 719-0848 if you have questions.
Peace and Blessings,
Rev. Sonja Lee, Founder/Executive Director
Lionel Lee Jr. Center for Wellness
PRAYER FOR NONPROFIT LEADERS– Rabbi Judy Schindler
We are meant to love god with all our hearts, with all our souls and with all our might. We are grateful for all of you .
Next meeting– Next Thursday at 11 a.m.
MeckMIN breakfast, May 27th
Volunteers to staff meal shifts at additional 70 hotel rooms that County is considering. Email LeDayneto work on finding volunteers for this effort.
Masks, gloves, toilet paper still needed by many. Contact LeDayneif you can provide.
Sponsor a table or half a tableat MeckMIN breakfast ($500/$250)
Contact Haroldat Community Link to offer financial support or to connect him with someone to help prepare tax returns
Donate $ or diapers and wipes to Migrant Assistance Project. Contact: email@example.com
Donate sandwiches to Urban Ministry
Donations of canned food, fresh food and supplies needed at Queen City Family Tree. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Donate tents to Block Love — Deborah Woolard email@example.com
9. Donate or volunteer for Refugee Support Services — Contact the RSS Help Line for questions: (980) 263-9334
10. Donate to the Lionel Lee Jr. Center for Wellness (LLCW) – Sonja Lee firstname.lastname@example.org
There was a request for consolidated and confirmed list of food resources for people who have run out of Loaves and Fishes referrals. This list is attached.’
We are sharing a request from Pastor Theo Schaffer who has been a regular attendee of these calls:
90 for 90 Request
I hope you all are doing well; your families, the ministry and yourselves.
My name is Pastor Theo Schaffer, I am the Community Liaison for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and the head of our CMPD Chaplaincy and Faith Leaders network.
We want to invite you to participate in our Charlotte-Mecklenburg 90 Days of Prayer!
We want to team up with you, your house of faith and/or organization to help pray, intercede for our city, leaders, first-responders, medical professionals and more.
Email Theopelis.Schaffer@cmpd.orgto sign up.
As you know our world, country, state and city has been devastated by the impact of the COVID19 outbreak.
Moreover, in 2019, Charlotte suffered 108 homicide and this year we are dealing with crime, families struggling and our youth needing hope.
It’s time to pray!
Therefore, we are asking you to pray for our City and County, the CMPD, other public safety officials, elected officials and community elders, and the public.
We believe that prayer will create a foundation from which to face and address the challenges ahead with wisdom and courage.
Will you commit to being 1 of 90 congregations to pray for your first responders and neighbors in the Greater Charlotte Region? Then please join “90 for 90” – 90 congregations for 90 days of prayer – beginning on Sunday, May 10 and ending on Saturday, August 8.
Praying for our community is a valuable way to see and to love our neighbor and, possibly, the first step in making a difference as your congregation becomes more engaged in the life around you. This prayer can be just a few minutes in length or up to 24 hours.
If you’re IN to pray with us simply email me with your congregation’s information i.e. Name, Physical Address and Phone Number.
Rev. Theo Schaffer
Community Liaison & Program Coordinator
CMPD Community Services Bureau
Community Engagement Division
A: 601 E Trade St, Charlotte, NC 28202
C: (704) 877.4146
O: (704) 432.0432 ext. 41941
“I slept and dreamt that life was joy.
I awoke and saw that life was service.
I acted and behold, service was joy.”