Every month we like to highlight a special charity that serves the same communities we operate in. This month, we are highlighting the Christian Service Center of Abilene.
Since 1965, the Christian Service Center has served approximately 7,000 people in need each year. Their greatest hope is to provide basis needs and support to those in poverty without creating a climate of dependency.
Unfortunately, in April 2016 the Christian Service Center was destroyed by a fire. No one was in the building at the time of the fire and no one was injured but the ministry suffered a total and complete loss of its furnishings, equipment and supplies. However, the mission continues. Despite this hardship, the Christian Service Center has relocated and has resumed accepting donations. Renovations are currently underway and are hoped to be completed by December 2016. For more information about how you can help the Christian Service Center get back on its feet after the fire or to make a donation to the Fire Relief Fund, please visit their webpage or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Based in the ministry of Jesus, the Christian Service Center not only provides basic needs like food, clothing, household items or school supplies the Center also provides bibles and spiritual consul and prayer.
The Center has several programs that provide support to the poor in the Abilene community. The programs include:
Feed The Hungry
“The Christian Service Center maintains a food pantry for those who have food insecurity. The pantry relies on donations of money and food. Most of the food given through the pantry is purchased from the Food Bank of Abilene; it is supplemented by various churches who conduct food drives to stock the pantry. At least 20 pounds of food is given to each person requesting assistance. 1,399 food orders were filled during 2015, providing food for hungry people in Abilene1.”
“The Fresh Start Program offers assistance through Work for Shelter to people who are transitioning back into society from incarceration or through recovery programs. Through this program, people are offered a one-time, weekly rent payment at a local shelter or half-way program in exchange for 12 hours of volunteer work at the Christian Service Center. Fresh Start provides a means of immediate financial assistance, while allowing the client the opportunity to give back to their new community through volunteer service. While volunteering at the Christian Service Center, people are offered support through acceptance and spiritual nurture, job referrals, and referrals to agencies that can further their success in transitioning back into a healthy life. The Fresh Start Program continues to evolve as we reach out to and encourage our neighbors toward healthy, independent lifestyles, while embracing them with the love shown to us by Jesus Christ1.”
Operation Blue Jeans
OBJ began in 1967 as a means of providing new blue jeans for children in elementary and middle school. The program begins in July. Families make appointments to get new school clothes for their children. Elementary children receive 1 pair of new blue jeans, 5 pairs of new underwear and socks, 1 string backpack & “Success Kit” (2 pens, 4 pencils, a highlighter, a bookmark, a large eraser, hand sanitizer, Kleenex tissues, a toothbrush, toothpaste, and a comb) and new school supplies. Middle School students receive 2 standard polo style shirts, 2 pairs of dress pants or a skirt, 1 string backpack and “Success Kit” (2 pens, 4 pencils, a highlighter, a bookmark, a large eraser, hand sanitizer, Kleenex tissues, a toothbrush, toothpaste, and a comb), 12 Tips to Succeed in Middle School and 15 Parent Tips to Help Your Middle School Student Succeed1.”
“In 1972 a blanket drive was begun to collect blankets for families. The program has evolved and now provides not only blankets, but heaters for homes with inadequate heat. During the hot Texas summer and early fall, CSC makes fans available to individuals and families who lack air conditioning in their homes. Hundreds of blankets were provided to the needy in 2015. 161 people received new fans to help cool their homes. 90 heaters were given to families with inadequate heat in their homes1.”
“CSC offers Bibles to any client who requests one. Staff and volunteers will also pray for or with clients if they request prayer. In 2015 CSC provided hundreds of Bibles to adults, and 211 Bibles to young children. Every person who came to CSC was treated with respect and offered help with tangible items and hope through spiritual comfort and prayers1.”
Standing In The Gap
This program offers financial assistance for individuals and families who come to CSC with immediate financial needs. The program includes, but is not limited to: emergency assistance with gas vouchers, bus passes, prescriptions, rent and utility help and dental assistance. CSC depends on our donors to to be able to help our neighbors with these emergency needs. In 2015, 86 people received assistance with rent, 34 people received medical prescriptions, 184 people received gas vouchers, 55 people received free dental help at local dentists, 37 people had help from CSC to pay their utilities, 1,195 bus passes were given to people in Abilene1.”
Stocking The Home
“Through donations and some purchases, CSC is able to help a family stock a kitchen with items that ensure families have the ability to prepare food. The agency also supplies towels and linens when needed, as well as other household items which are donated. In 2015, 409 people received kitchen supplies from CSC and 55 car seats were given to parents with babies or toddlers1.”
Toys For Children
“Each year thousands of toys are donated to the Christian Service by generous donors. The toys are assembled by wonderful volunteers, “The Toy Ladies”, who organize and decorate themed baskets for the children who come to CSC for assistance. Many of the toys CSC receives are set aside to give to families during the Christmas season, as well as during other holiday seasons such as Halloween and Easter. The Christian Service Center is also able to share hundreds of toy baskets with a number of our community partners1.”
Alon Brands is proud to support local charities in our communities. In 2013, the Christian Service Center participate in our Load The Code contest for a chance to with cash for their cause. For more information about the Christian Service Center please visit their website at www.cscabilene.org.