Donate to those in need at this time of giving
Over the years, the small in number, but large on helping and caring, Outreach Team of Unity Spiritual Center Westlake, have donated to many charitable organizations. Among them have been Malachi House where wish-list items were collected and donated at "Christmas in July."
In addition, we've collected items from the wish-list of Laura's Home, sponsored a diaper drive, distributed turkeys and hams on the near West Side of Cleveland, donated to three animal sanctuaries through a Pet Blessing, tutored reading in elementary schools, and collected clothing and personal necessities for Lutheran Men's Ministries.
This year, like Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz, we decided to look no further than home, and selected Westlake Community Service Department's Food Bank as one of our designated charities. We learned that the Westlake Food Bank donates holiday baskets to the needy, and gives a three-day emergency supply of non-perishable food and goods in situations of need.
After hearing what the Food Bank did, we selected it, along with Providence House, a crisis center for infants and children, as one of our two favorite charities for this season's joyful giving. It's easy to give to the Food Bank, this yearlong project will accept non-perishable food items at Unity, 23855 Detroit Road, Westlake, which will be dropped off to the Westlake Center on Hillard Boulevard.
You don't have to be a member of USC to donate, stop by, say hello and do something nice for others. The donation box is located inside across from the church's main office. Non-perishable food items like peanut butter, pasta and applesauce are always great, but consider everyday needs like bath soap, laundry detergent, all-purpose cleaners, pet foods and vitamins that low-income families greatly need.
Would you, could you deny a child an oatmeal cookie if they asked you for one? We, the Outreach Team, can hear you saying no, I would help a hungry child. That's exactly what Providence House does, and much more. Located on West 32nd Street in Cleveland, for over 32 years they have helped infants, children and families in crisis. They provide safe, nurturing, short-term care for children 10 and under, while working with parents in a supportive way towards gaining wellness. At-risk children have their physical, emotional and educational needs provided for, while parents are respected and provided with education and resources.
It's easy to give to the children of Providence House – stop by our giving tree in USC's Hall and take a bulb off the tree. Each bulb has an item from the wish list of Providence House. When you're out holiday shopping for your family, think of the children spending the holidays away from theirs, yet nurtured through this time of crisis at Providence House.
Return the item to USC, the Outreach Team will do the rest! The last day to donate is Dec. 22 by noon.
Oatmeal cookies greatly needed and appreciated.
I am on the Board of Trustees of Unity Spiritual Center