Ready to Serve in Times of Disaster

All of our communities will one day be affected by a disaster – whether natural, such as storms or earthquakes or a volcano erupting as Mt. St. Helens did 37 years ago today, or caused by accidental or deliberate human conduct. When that time comes, will you be ready to help?

Learn more about how you can help in times of disaster at a Care Teams training! Disaster Response Care Teams are groups of trained volunteers who provide support, compassion, and resources to those affected by disasters.  Training and materials are free!

The next Care Team training will take place on:

Saturday, June 10, 2017, 9 – 11 AM
Bethlehem Baptist Church
4818 Portland Avenue, Tacoma, WA 98404

The topic is Psychological First Aid – understanding the impact of disasters, and how to be a calming presence and emotional support to survivors. Coffee and refreshments will be served.

For more information visit our website at www.associatedministries.org.

Call to Faith Communities: City’s Homeless Encampments

City of Tacoma’s Explanation of Declaration of
State of Emergency Responding to
Homeless Encampments 

The City of Tacoma has called a meeting to explain and discuss the recent declaration of a state of emergency responding to homeless encampments.  Agenda is attached here.

Thursday, May 18
3:00 – 4:30 pm
Tacoma Municipal Bldg. North
733 Market St., Room 16
Tacoma 98402

Main meeting topics will include:
  Explanation of the Declaration
  The City’s Response to the Declaration
  Aligning the Response with Coordinated Entry & Pierce County
  Forming a Data Committee
  Next Steps

Faith-based organizations interested in participating or who have additional questions can respond directly to Tiegan Tidball with the City of Tacoma at 253-573-2320 or ttidball@cityoftacoma.org.

Your collaboration and support in this endeavor to support the homeless in our community is appreciated.    

Volunteer with Paint Tacoma

“I cried tears of joy. It looks beautiful. My house is beautiful.”

“On Social Security, I can’t afford to pay someone to paint my house. The volunteers’ help means the world to me.”

 “The crew was awesome. I’d be happy to recommend Paint Tacoma to anyone.”

These are a few of the words of gratitude shared by homeowners served by Paint Tacoma volunteers last year! You, too, can bring joy to low-income homeowners – most of whom are elderly or disabled – by serving as a Paint Tacoma volunteer.

Gather together friends, family, group members or coworkers to form a paint crew, or sign up as an individual and we’ll place you with a paint project. Whether you can serve for one day only, or can work on a project from start to finish, we can use your help!

Not into painting? There are other ways to get involved, from repairs, to supply delivery, to photography. For more information, contact Wendy Morris at wendym@associatedministries.org or 253-426-1501.

Sign up to serve as a Paint Tacoma volunteer today! www.PaintBeautiful.org.

Local faith leaders pledge ‘respite and refuge’ from immigration raids

Churches, synagogues, mosques and temples and the wider faith community are united by the perennial tradition of welcoming the stranger as neighbor, alleviating suffering, removing fear and humanizing situations of injustice through solidarity and systems change. Faith communities have long exercised their spiritual commitments of hospitality, accompaniment and rapid response as part of the equity and social justice movement of liberation; “no one is free until we all are free.”

With that commitment in mind, the Church Council of Greater Seattle invited all faith communities to come together on May 1 at Saint Mark’s Cathedral in Seattle for a meeting to launch a local expression of the Sanctuary Movement. Participants included congregations who are declaring themselves to be a sanctuary congregation, congregations in discernment, supportive congregations, rapid response hubs and satellites, congregations who confront the targeting of certain groups, congregations committing to accompany and offer solidarity to immigrants and refugees and friends rooted in social justice.

During the meeting several local congregations pledged to serve as places of respite and refuge on a short-term basis in the case of local raids, sweeps or communal fear of harassment or hate violence. SeattlePI.com covered the meeting: http://www.seattlepi.com/local/politics/article/Churches-in-May-Day-pledge-of-respite-and-11112559.php#photo-12828489

To learn more about the local Sanctuary movement, contact Michael Ramos of the Church Council of Greater Seattle via his assistant Ann Erickson at aerickson@thechurchcouncil.org.

Conference to End Homelessness

Conference to End Homelessness
by Tammy Boros, Housing Program Manager, Associated Ministries

On May 10th -11th 2017, homeless service providers throughout the State of Washington convened in Tacoma at the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center for the Washington Low Income Housing Alliance (WILHA) Conference to End Homelessness.  This is a yearly conference for homeless providers to come together and learn.  Homeless providers were able to attend to multiple workshops that helped them strengthen their service delivery to homeless households.  On Wednesday, May 10th, one of the workshop both Associated Ministries (Tammy Boros and Angela Thompson) and Catholic Community Services (Alan Brown and Will Gorbaty) had the pleasure of hosting was on Diversion here in Pierce County and how we utilize Diversion.  When a household comes in contact with the Coordinated Entry System(CES) we first have a problem-solving conversation (Diversion) to help prevent homeless households from having to enter into Pierce County’s homeless services.  This workshop was focused on Diversion and not the Coordinated Entry System.  We tried to make our workshop as interactive as possible so that providers could walk away with having the experience of leading a problem solving conversation (Diversion) within a workshop setting. We had providers from all over the state attend this workshop including homeless providers from King, Kitsap, and Thurston counties. 

Friends of AM “Keep Dreams Alive” at Annual Gala

Saturday, April 29 was a highlight of the year for Associated Ministries as we welcomed hundreds of friends to our annual “Keeping Dreams Alive” Gala and Auction. Tens of thousands of dollars were raised to provide critical services to many of the most vulnerable members of our community.

Gala guests had a great time enjoying a delicious meal and meeting new friends, and many went home as the high bidder on a wonderful auction item or two!

During the evening attendees also learned more about the work of AM. The inspiring story of Byron and Mackenzie was showcased in a video, representing just one of the families we were able to directly impact and improve their lives.

Even if you were not able to attend our Gala this year, you can still help us bring life-changing solutions to more people in need in Pierce County. A gift to Associated Ministries helps to end poverty and homelessness in our community by enabling those we serve to find permanent housing and become self-sufficient with dignity and strength.

For more information about how you can get involved in changing lives, visit our website.

Take a moment now to mark the date of next year’s AM Gala and Auction on your calendar: Saturday, April 28, 2018…and invite a few friends to join you for a great evening that makes a big difference!

Uniting Together in Prayer

It’s not every day that faith leaders from nine different faiths gather together to lead prayer.  But that’s exactly what happened last Thursday, at AM’s annual interfaith observance of the National Day of Prayer. 

Community and faith leaders gathered together to lift up the needs of our nation and local community.  The National Day of Prayer, created in 1952, is a day that transcends differences, bringing together citizens from all backgrounds. This annual observance invites people of all faiths to pray for our nation. It is estimated that more than 30,000 observances are organized annually throughout the country, with AM’s gathering being one of the very few interfaith gatherings across the country.

We gathered to pray for seven areas of our nation and communities: families, education, business, media, military, government and faith communities.  This gathering felt timely this year, in an ever-changing nation where prayer feels needed more than ever.

We came together from our different faiths: Christian Science, Baha’i, Jewish, Mormon, Roman Catholic, Protestant, Unitarian Universalist, Muslim and the spiritual, non-affiliated.  We came together…and we prayed.  As important, we spent time together, hearing one another, and realizing we all have hopes for our communities and our nation.  And sharing in our gratitude for one another, and this wonderful country we call home.

Skating for Homes

On Friday, June 2, 2017, Associated Ministries will be welcoming groups of youth from different faith communities to our first-ever “Skating for Homes” skate-a-thon.  This free and fun event, will be from 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm at Rollin’ 253 Skate and Community Center.

Through our partnership with Rollin’ 253 Skate & Community Center, and Help Us Move In, we are able to help educate youth about the issue of homelessness and help raise funds for youth who, along with their families, are experiencing homelessness.  Youth will have the opportunity to seek donations for either each lap they complete within one hour, or a flat donation.  All funds raised will be matched dollar for dollar by the generosity of Help Us Move In and will be used to directly assist clients with children who are in need of help with housing.

This is also a wonderful opportunity for youth leaders at our partner faith communities to help their youth understand the issue of homelessness and discuss ways they are drawn to help.  For more information or to request a housing specialist to speak to your group, please contact Wendy Morris, Community Engagement Coordinator at wendym@associatedministries.org or 253-383-3056 ext. 117.

Registration for “Skating for Homes” closes on Friday, May 26th so make sure to turn your request for tickets and receive pledge cards in to wendym@associatedministries.org before the deadline.  

Faith Communities Day at Tacoma Rainiers Game

As part of our mission of uniting people of faith, we want to invite you to our second annual “Faith Communities Day at the Tacoma Rainiers”!  This fun, family event on Sunday, July 16th is a perfect opportunity for your faith community to join other faith communities for a day at the ballpark. First pitch is at 1:35, with gates opening at noon at Cheney Stadium (2502 S. Tyler St, Tacoma 98405).  Pictures from last year’s event show how much fun faith communities had together!

Tickets are $13.00 each which includes a ballpark lunch.  Why should you join us instead of just going to the game?  By purchasing through Associated Ministries instead of groups obtaining them separately, we can ensure that the faith communities sit in the same section, which helps build a stronger community!
 
We are offering two options for you:
1)     You can purchase tickets and give them or sell them to your members
2)     You can purchase tickets and use them as a fundraiser to support your youth groups activities, mission trips, or other needs you have
 

Don’t delay! The Rainiers tell me seats are starting to sell faster for this game now that spring is here.  Please reserve your tickets by Monday, May 15th to ensure you will be sitting with other faith communities.   Ordering tickets is easy: just contact our Community Engagement Coordinator, Wendy Morris at 253-383-3056 ext. 117 or wendym@associatedministries.org with how many tickets you would like for your group. She will arrange to get your tickets to you in plenty of time for selling (or you can pre-sell to get an accurate count of how many you need).

Download General Flyer Here 

If you would like a customizable flyer (Word format), please contact Wendy.  The customizable option can help you if you are looking to use the tickets as a fundraiser. Remember, each ticket gets a reserved-seat game ticket, a ballpark meal, and game program.  There will also be pregame autographs on the concourse and post-game Kids Run the Bases.
 
And don’t forget Rhubarb will be there and he wants you all to come too!  He says, “come out to Cheney Stadium on Sunday, July 16th to enjoy an afternoon of family fun, see future Mariners, and most importantly see the world’s greatest Reindeer (with apologies to my cousin Rudolph)!”  We hope you will join us for this fun day!
 

    For more information contact:
Wendy Morris at

253-383-3056 x117 or 

wendym@associatedministries.org

We look forward to seeing you soon! 

Learn More about Homelessness Crisis Response System…and How You Can Help

Invitation to learn about the Coordinated Entry System (Pierce County’s crisis response system for those experiencing homelessness)

Members of the faith community, the staff of Associated Ministries (AM) would welcome a visit to your place of worship, business or neighborhood community meeting to present information on Pierce County’s Coordinated Entry System, the crisis system for all those experiencing homelessness in Pierce County. 

The first step in solving homelessness is to become educated about the homeless system, so you can inform those who are in need of service or others who may need to help a household navigate the system.    

If you would like AM staff to present during a social concerns committee, adult forum or whatever meeting makes the most sense, we’ll be there.

The more people of faith and goodwill we educate about homelessness the better!   It is going to take A LOT of people to move the needle to end homelessness.

Please feel free to contact me if you would like to schedule a time for Associated Ministries to come out to your place of worship or business to present information on the Coordinated Entry System.

In service,

Valorie Crout

Chief Program Officer

valoriec@associatedministries.org

253-426-1508

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