28 January 2009

10 Year Old Learns the Joy of Giving

Paul (tallest) has a future in philanthropy.

Paul and his family have been to Open Door Mission on several occasions. They've had a tour, and they have participated in some volunteer projects. Paul really enjoyed his experiences here.

But something moved Paul to bigger and better things. (After all, he IS ten years old now).

For his birthday party on January 8th, he invited his friends with these instructions: "No gifts for me. I'm collecting any money or toys I receive and giving them to Open Door Mission. I want to help those who don't have much."
Today, Paul came to Open Door Mission with mom and siblings. Paul brought more than $85, plus several brand new toys.

Thanks, Paul. We know God will bless you for blessing others. And it really IS more fun to give than to receive, isn't it?

23 January 2009


Hi, I'm Jennifer, and I LOVE working in the volunteer dept. at Open Door Mission! Two cool things happened today.

First, chickens.

Six pallets of whole birds! Donated to Open Door Mission by Werner Enterprises, Inc., these birds will provide chicken soup, chicken enchiladas, fried chicken, chicken casserole and so much more. Hot nutritious meals pave the way for hope. Thank you, Werners, for recognizing that people are "hungry for food, hungry for new life".

Second, sixth graders.

A great group of sixth graders from Sunny Side Elementary School visited the Mission today for a tour and to volunteer. These kids made more than 600 sack lunches to be delivered to homeless and poor families in the Greater Omaha area. They made sandwiches, bagged cookies and tied everything up with "hope". When they completed that project, they created some wonderful Valentine table decorations for our upcoming Hearts of Hope Banquet on Saturday, February 14th.

If you would like more information about donating or volunteering at Open Door Mission, please contact Cris today.

19 January 2009

Feed The Children and Open Door Mission

Open Door Mission benefited from the 2009 Day of Service and Feed The Children, as more than 50 volunteers came to "lend a hand" today.

Numerous teens, adults, and even families were on hand to help sort canned goods donated by Feed The Children. These nonperishables will allow Open Door Mission to provide food pantries to needy families, empowering them to remain in their own homes.

Volunteers also assisted in food preparation and service, and in sorting and shelving clothing and household items at the Timberlake Outreach Center. Because today was also King's Kloset, many individuals and families were at the TOC to shop. Volunteers enjoyed the experience of assisting families as they looked for clothing and household items.

All agreed that it was a GREAT WAY to spend January 19th, Martin Luther King Day. They want to come back and do more!

If you, your family or your organization would like to become a volunteer at Open Door Mission, please contact Cris today. She'll help you find your service "niche".

14 January 2009

Jen Culbertson, volunteer associate at Open Door Mission, loves working with youth groups who come to serve.

The group pictured here, First Evangelical Lutheran Church from Nebraska City, helped at the Timberlake Outreach Center last weekend sorting shoes, clothes, and household items. Two even had the opportunity to teach swing dance to some residents at the Lydia House. A few more volunteered to assist in cleaning floors.

According to Jen, it was a most profitable day, and she is eager for this group to return!

If you have a youth group ready to serve, contact Cris to schedule an opportunity. Open Door Mission is ready for you!

13 January 2009

Omaha, NE - Next week President-elect Barack Obama is calling on a "National Day of Service".

Urban League of Nebraska is getting a jump start. All this week, the ULN will be collecting coats, toys and cell phones.

Genita won't be cold this winter, thanks to her new jacket. "There's fur everywhere!" She said. Someone donated the coat to the Open Door Mission, and it ended up in Genita's arms.
"I didn't have a coat. I wasn't warm and it was getting cold. When they gave me this coat I was like, thank you Jesus!" she said. In the room next door, a 10-year-old jams out on her new Hannah Montana guitar, one of many toy donations made to the Open Door Mission. "The donated toys to me means a lot because the children here, they are so overwhelmed," said her mom Melody.

And the shelter hopes to get even more. Open Door Mission will be receiving donated coats, toys, and cell phones as part of a donation drive by the Urban League of Nebraska. All the items will be given back to those who need them in the community.

Thank you ULN, and all the generous members of our good Heartland community!

09 January 2009

Adopt a Family a Great Success!

As I complete more than 150 personal "thank yous" to as many family sponsors...it occurs to me that those who have never "adopted" a family for Christmas might be interested in how it works, for next year, perhaps.

Adopt a Family is a rewarding program which allows a church group, business, organization or family to "adopt" another family in great need.

The family on the receiving end certainly has a magnificient time at Christmas, thanks to their sponsors.

The group on the giving end, the "sponsors", learn once again that it's much more fun to give! While sponsors and families never really "meet", they communicate in requests and thank yous. The end result includes big smiles, happy children and thankful moms and dads. And satisfied sponsors mark the program on their calendar for next year.

Want more information? Contact Trudi at tbils@opendoormission.org. She'll add you to next year's list. It's never too early to start planning!

06 January 2009

Friends of the Friendless Invite You!

Friends of the Friendless is a strong and vibrant group of volunteers who meet monthly at Open Door Mission. Together they enjoy lunch, spend time in prayer, and engage in a preselected beneficial volunteer project.
Today's project included working in the Timberlake Outreach Center as an SOS Team: Sorting, Organizing, and Shelving donated goods. At the end, staff at the TOC raved about the work accomplished by this powerful group!

Judy Ward spoke a brief challenge to the men and women gathered today at Open Door Mission. February's meeting is one you won't want to miss! Friends of the Friendless President's Luncheon is Tuesday, February 3rd. Join this lively group at 11:30 AM for a delicious free luncheon and learn more about how you can become a part of a group that truly brings hope to those who are Hungry for Food, Hungry for New Life.

For reservations to the President's Luncheon please contact Maggie at mcope@opendoormission.org.