Not In My City changes lives by helping churches move their people into action, meeting real needs in the local community. Not In My City accomplishes this goal by helping local churches align their outreach in partnership with other churches and local organizations, while also creating new services where help is lacking. We focus our efforts around three initiatives...
Children will understand their God-given potential and have every opportunity to attain it. Couples will have the support they need for their marriages to thrive. People will know where to turn for help when a crisis hits. On the website there are a variety of ways people can volunteer to help their community through three main focuses of children, couples and crisis. notinmycity.org
Holiday Lane Market Place (HLMP) is the result of responding to a need that we saw for the families we serve. We recognized that not all families were able to get registered and submit the needed documentation for the organized traditional toy and gift programs during the holidays, so we converted our unused CCSU (Children's Crisis Unit) in Largo into the Holiday Lane Market Place, for the 2 weeks before Christmas. The once residential bedrooms have been turned into stores for families to come and shop; we have a Toy, Teen, School Aged, Babies, Women's, Men's, Shoe, and House Ware Stores, and the large open Day Room is used for our furniture Show Room, and the back porch is a wrap center if parents choose to wrap their gifts after shopping!
Market Place is not fancy, but it is effective! We accept gently used donations that are gift appropriate, as well as new items (typically toys), we also accept hangers, plastic grocery bags, and our best donations are from folks doing "Spring Cleaning." We have scheduled work days where we come together as a staff to sort and display the donations, and staff volunteers to cover the desk during these weeks. We are open for any family needing assistance and there is no requirement that a family need to be associated with a program, agency, etc. and each year we have had families return with their own donations, so it is indeed a full circle resource.
For the holiday season 2012 we served 172 families comprised of 251 adults and 516 children for a total of 767 individuals receiving holiday assistance! HLMP runs for 2 weeks in December, however Market Place is the same concept and is available to the community year round, and has proven to be a great place for many families in need of interview clothes, baby items, and furniture when it is available.
Grace Church covers once of the largest and most needy areas in Lee County . In addition to their ministries, through the Grace Community Center numerous services are offered such as groceries, clothes, GED programs, haircuts, health screenings, pet food, parenting classes, etc. by partnering with existing community agencies such as Children's Advocacy Center of SWFL, Dr. Piper Center for Social Services, Dept. of Health, Delta Family Counseling and Lee County Sheriff's Office. In 2011, GCC gave away 238,086 pounds of food to more than 26,048 people in need. It provided more than 31,622 pounds of pet food, 748 haircuts, assisted 393 people in applying for food stamps, Medicaid or a free cell phone, provided 585 students with free GED tutoring, hosted more than 2500 students in the at-risk program and served 1508 people in a single month with medical assistance.
Every March, Synergy Salon along with local boutiques in Tallahassee put on a fashion show that benefits a local organization. This year the proceeds of the fashion show were raised for Pace Center for Girls of Leon County. We choose Pace because of their efforts to helping young girls become successful women in the community. As a salon we want to bring out the beauty in all women, inside and out, so partnering with Pace was a perfect fit! Synergy Salon also hosts Patrick Lomantini, a well-known stylist who does 50 haircuts in 50 days in 50 states to raise money for animal shelters, they partnered with WCTV for their Monday Makeovers and provided the hair and make-up and owner Piper Redmond and her stylists are Leaders in Learning at Lively Tech and go routinely to teach a class.
On June 30, 2012, Layla's House along with 100 Black Men of Tampa Bay and Champions for Children hosted a barbecue for Bay area men and children. The organizations are partnering and providing a venue in hopes of encouraging fathers in Sulphur Springs to become more involved in their children's lives. The free event included music, food and games. Layla's House promotes healthy, happy families by coordinating and providing programs, resources, activities and opportunities that enhance positive early childhood development and support families of children ages 0-5 years. 100 Black Men of Tampa Bay, Inc. (100 BMTB) is a 501(c)(3) community service organization that was officially chartered on June 5, 2002. Since that time, the organization has worked diligently towards channeling resources and opportunities into agendas that reinforce the core tenets of the 100 Mentoring, Health and Wellness, Education, and Economic Development. This is a Partner for Promise in Circuit 13.
Doubletree Tallahassee, supervisor Alma Sohns, was one of Tallahassee's first partners who hired a refugee and they continue to do so. Ms. Sohns works hard to provide opportunities to learn English at the job site. http://doubletree3.hilton.com/en/index.html. Four Points Sheraton of Tallahassee supports the refugees in this area by hiring, training and providing benefits for part and full time employment. They are on the bus line which makes it easy for them to get to work. fourpointstallahasseedowntown.com. Staybridge Suites in Tallahassee has hired local refugees. They have Spanish speaking staff and are more than willing to work with others speaking different languages. They also provide a shuttle to pick up employees at a central location since bus service does not go to their site.
At JM Family, philanthropy extends well beyond financial contributions. They also offer in-kind support such as video production, marketing and awareness campaigns and technology assistance, as well as extensive volunteer opportunities for associates and their families to lend a hand and make a difference. In South Florida, where JM Family is headquartered, they maintain strategic partnerships with organizations that provide services to children and families including a long-term commitment with Kids In Distress. With significant business operations in Jacksonville, Fla., they regularly partner with nonprofits that drive stronger families and make our community a better place.
Southern Affordable Services, Inc., is a non-profit organization head quartered in Maitland, but with presence throughout Florida and 8 other states. SAS grew out of a larger private property management organization who recognized a problem in Central Florida and developed a new organization to respond. Following the "60 Minutes" special on homelessness broadcasted in March 2011 they launched the New Moves Partnership program to place homeless families throughout Central Florida in vacant apartment units. SAS believes that life and job planning is an integral part of the partnership in trying to permanently reverse the homeless cycle. Homelessness of course isn't just about a house or apartment, it's about job, transportation, healthcare, childcare etc. We are looking at it more holistically. They have extensive relationships with property management organizations throughout the State. This program is designed to be a hand up, not a hand out and seek families who are homeless due to circumstance outside their control.
In 2011, Southern Affordable Services was able to locate housing for 87 homeless families. During one event in Osceola County, partnered with the West 192 project, Southern Affordable Services were able to locate housing for 57 children identified as homeless by the school district. SAS is partner in the Hospitality Helps Initiative, as well as with the Facebook Homeless 2 Home initiative that launched in February of this year. They are interested in expanding the partnerships to the Suncoast Region and will be reaching out to their Community Development Administrator.
This week SAS was able to assist in housing and employing the Larson family, moving them from homeless onto the road of self-sufficiency. The Larson family is highlighted on the Homeless 2 Home page on Facebook , a family of 5 who are not spending the night in a motel today, but in an apartment and gainfully employed! ASA exemplifies the idea of a private corporation, developing community based responses to the needs of the people of Central Florida.
Mad Dog Construction of Tallahassee donated their fee and helped bring in other donations for the construction of the headquarters of the Children's Home Society of North Florida. They are also currently supporting the Renaissance Community Center by donating fees and consulting services for the project. This community-conscious organization has provided significant construction consulting services to and donated profits from their renovation services at Refuge House. Mad Dog was instrumental in providing support for the establishment of the HOPE Community, a project of the Big Bend Homeless Coalition offering housing and life skills as well as job training for homeless families.
The Cultural Center of Charlotte County is a local non-profit. They are willing to host The Heart Gallery and provide free meeting space to the Department when needed. They currently have 400-500 volunteers. They offer free rides to seniors for apts/errands that are a necessity.
Local churches step up to host Pasco Kinship Care Support Groups ....
Trinity Presbyterian Church of Seven Springs 4651 Little Rd, New Port Richey 34655 Tuesday May 22nd, 10am-1130am
Land O Lakes Library 2818 Collier Pkwy Friday, May 18th at 10am-1130am
St. Joseph Catholic Church 5316 11th Street Zephyrhills, FL, 33542 Wed, May 23rd at 6:30-8pm
The principals of AGPM have been helping Central Florida families in need with housing for 20 years. The corporate headquarters includes a division focused on the social service needs of their residents, called the Tree House. As the Social Service Manager, Jill Mitchell was asked to create a program to assist the homeless and precariously housed families of Central Florida who were in a position to start taking steps to improve their situation. The program requires that families demonstrate a crisis that lead to their current situation and some level of income. The program decreases their monthly rent by 50% to start, with a monthly increase of $20 each month thereafter. After one year their rent increases to the full rate. The program affords families, who have had a sudden unexpected crisis, time to recover and gain their financial footing once again.
Currently APGM is working with Victoria, a single mom with 2 children. Victoria had a family crisis that led to the loss of her housing and her employment. APGM is moving Victoria and her family into an apartment in the Metro area. Victoria will be working with a case manager to assist her in recovering her economic self-sufficiency. APGM also has 3 other families they are currently working with through their assistance program.
Westgate Resorts in Orlando is currently working on a program to provide homeless families housing and employment. Since November 2011, three families with a total of 17 people have moved into Westgate properties and started jobs with the corporation. Westgate is asking partners in the community to join them in a similar endeavor and is partnering with DCF to coordinate a Central Florida meeting to bring corporate, government, and nonprofit entities together to discuss collaborative opportunities.
A Tallahassee residential neighborhood, Hunter's Crossing, had a "Baby Shower" for the Brehon House - a home that provides security for homeless pregnant women and their infants in the Tallahassee area. They collected some wonderful baby clothes, cases of diapers & wipes, books, stuffed animals, toys, lotion, etc. This neighborhood collects items for area non-profits several times a year - examples of collections: toilet paper for the homeless shelter, food for children's backpacks (for the weekend), and diapers & such for babies. If every neighborhood took on just one project - imagine how much that would help our most vulnerable children and families!
Aeropostale donated hundreds of pairs of Jeans to Safe Children Coalition Clothes Closet to hand out to the children and families we serve. Aeropostale is a clothing store located in the Ellenton Outlet Mall.
A Prom Gown Give-Away was hosted by "The Gathering of Women" all free to high school Juniors & Seniors at the Child Park YMCA in St. Petersburg. Just another wonderful example of giving back to the community!
Mr. Ludvicek in from Charlotte County and is willing to assist families with debt consolidation or home foreclosure issues. He formally owned his own mortgage company.
The Junior League of Clearwater-Dunedin, Inc. held their 4th Annual Foster Youth Summit and Life Skills Training to benefit over 50 area foster teens who receive services and support through Eckerd and Camelot Community Care. The Summit is designed to provide foster teens the opportunity to visualize their success, become inspired and learn valuable skills through hands on workshops. In 2008, the Junior League of Clearwater-Dunedin, Inc. selected a new project focusing efforts and resources to assist foster youth and families in Pinellas and Pasco counties. In addition to sponsoring an annual summit and life skills training for foster youth, other successful foster care support initiatives of the League include apartment starter kits for foster youth aging out of foster care and Done in a Day projects to provide resources and support to foster families, just to name a few. In addition, the League has adopted the creation of a Teen Training Center as their current signature community project; the proposed Center will provide life skills, educational and vocational training to foster teens and young adults formerly in foster care in Pinellas and Pasco counties.
Since he began volunteering for Circuit 17 (Broward County), forensic accountant John Dorony, CPA, has provided technical assistance to Adult Protective Investigators on more than 70 extremely complex financial exploitation cases. Investigators rely on his 28 years of experience to help interpret bank records, financial documents and estate obligations. In addition to his weekly volunteer commitment to DCF, Dorony also volunteers with the Florida Department of Elder Affairs. According to Maria Chiari, Adult Protective Services Program Administrator for Circuit 17, "John's work really clarifies a lot of cases for us; especially those cases where we lack the specific financial knowledge he brings to the table."
The Transportation Security Administration at the Fort Myers International Airport donated a 32" flat screen television to a Circuit 20 Adult Services Client for Christmas.
Several banks teamed up with the United Way of Lee, Hendry, and Glades in collaboration with Lee County Human Services and Lee County Extension Services to develop "Bank On Southwest Florida", a program that will assist Southwest Florida "unbanked" or "underbanked" households open checking or savings accounts, build a credit history, gain access to low-cost sources of credit and invest in their future. The initiative allows immediate access to new accounts with participating banks (Bank of America, CNL Bank, Everbank, FineMark Bank, Florida Gulf Bank, Iberia Bank, IronStone Bank, Stonegate Bank, and Sun Trust Bank) and offers access to free financial literacy workshops and lower cost sources of credit. To see this service go to bankonswfl.com
In October, the First Baptist Church of Naples serviced more than 175 cars at no cost to the owners. One hundred and fifty volunteers assisted in changing oil, checking tire tread and tire pressure, checking and when necessary replacing car lights, brake fluid, coolant, power steering fluid, and windshield fluid, air filter inspection,CV boots and exhaust system inspection. Financially challenged single mothers, widows, widowers and seniors could qualify for this service to keep their vehicles healthy and safe.
Wells Fargo has been active in communities across Florida by awarding $135,000 in grants to food banks statewide. The company supplemented the grants with volunteer activities in many locations.
Wells Fargo also participates in "prosperity campaigns" organized by the United Way to provide free tax prep so that Florida residents can access the tax credits. They provide financial support as well as the pro bono support of our team members who serve as tax prep volunteers.
In Seminole and Brevard counties, Community Credit Union provided youth aging out of foster care with free checking accounts and no fees. This also helped Independent Living youth with a smoother receipt of funds via direct deposit.