United Methodist Community Ministries of the Capitol Area Districts

                    2017-2018 Local Outreach Grants Awards

Centenary UMC Community Outreach (Franklin County CAN)

Marva Chisolm

      Grant:    $2,000    

Central City-Hello Neighbor (Franklin County CAN)

Joe Graves

    Grant:    $5,000

Church of the Good Shepherd Free Store (Franklin County)

Paula Nourse 614-326-9062

       Grant:    $2,500

The Free Store is open the 3rd Saturday of each month from 10:00 am - 1:00 pm at the church. They use the model that they learned from Church for All People. Items available include clothing and shoes for all ages, toys, books, small kitchen items, new underwear, some decorative items, linens, seasonal clothing like coats and gloves, and hygiene items.

Clair Food Pantry Plus (Franklin County)

Betty Houston 614-577-0718

    Grant:    $3,000    

Clair UMC has a food pantry open two days a week and a community meal is served on the 1st and 2nd Saturday of each month. They have recently added a health screening with a registered nurse available each Friday morning. They are considering expanding the food pantry to three days.

Common Ground Free Store Ministry Partnership (Delaware County)

Sharon Griner 740-369-3733

    Grant:    $2,500    

The Free Store is a partnership made up of over thirty churches and community organizations in Delaware County and is open four days a week. All shoppers and volunteers have the opportunity to share joys or concerns, and then a staff member, volunteer or shopper offers a prayer. On the third Sunday of each month, they offer “Message, Music and a Meal” to the shoppers. Shoppers have shared how much it means to them. Our volunteer base has increased to over 1,300 volunteers. About ten percent of our volunteers are shoppers who have been helped by our ministry and want to give back.

Community UMC One Community Re-entry Ministry (Pickaway County)

Rodney Griffith 740-474-4900

    Grant:    $2,500

One Community Ministries’ activities include but are not limited to weekly Bible and Discipleship Study as well as weekly pre-release and life skills classes at the Ross Correctional Institution. We serve residents in other correctional institutions within the state via our Mail Ministry Program. One of our recent re-entry clients, having just been released in June, 2014, has taken over as our ministries Prayer Coordinator. He receives prayer requests via e-mail; this helps him feel connected to the ministry and to those the ministry serves.

Community of Hope Eastside Latino Ministry Partnership (Franklin County)

Rev Kathi Herington 614-235-8796

    Grant:    $2,500    

Community of Hope Latino ministry is a partnership of 5 UM Churches providing ESL, homework help and construction assistance to 250 Hispanic families at a nearby mobile home park. English as a Second Language classes are offered for three levels of adult students, Homework Help meets 3 times a week for 60 children, Bible study and computer classes, and support programs for Latina women. A Hispanic worship service is offered every Saturday evening at Whitehall UMC at 7 PM.

Crossroads Food Pantry (Franklin County)

Jerry Lawson 614-274-4920 website:

    Grant:     $2,000

Toni has been one of the food pantry shoppers for years. About a year ago she asked if she could “give back” by volunteering in the pantry. After working several months she was diagnosed with an inoperable lung cancer which was wrapped around her heart. She asked for prayer as she went through chemo and radiation treatments. She is a very sick woman but she truly feels God working with her. Now her tumor has shrunk and she is back working in the pantry. She said proudly, “I just knew God was with me.”

Epworth UMC Marion Preschool and Daycare (Marion County)

Sarah Daum 740-387-1062

    Grant:    $1,500    

This ministry provides quality education and care for children from 6 weeks of age to 12. They provide radical hospitality to nearly 350 children and their family members every year. The teachers and staff model how to be kind to others for the children. They also establish a support system with families who are in need of assistance. The preschool has been serving the area for 51 years and the daycare will celebrate its 26th year.

Good Neighbors In the Village Ministry Partnership (Fairfield County)

Gayle McCreery 740-862-4343

    Grant:    $ 500    

Good Neighbors in the Village has expanded its ministries to include a Community Lunch and Tutor program for children, weekly Bible Studies, and for older adults Volleyball. Transportation is offered to events, visits are made to clients who are ill/institutionalized. Meals are delivered to clients who cannot attend.

Harlem Road UMC Friday Night Live (Delaware County)

Pam Leskovac 740-965-4543

    Grant:    $1,250

The goal of these Friday Night Live (FNL) and Summer Nights Live (SNL) programs is to reach a mix of kids showing them what Jesus’ love is all about. The first six months of this year, an average of 54 youth are attending FNL and 74 attended SNL. Our church now has the reputation in the community as a great place for kids. The volunteers are engaged with the kids the entire evening and enjoy seeing the lives of children change before their eyes!

Hebron New Life UMC Baby Pantry (Licking County)

Beth Walters 740-403-6996

    Grant:    $2,500    

The New Life Baby Pantry serves children birth to 10 years old. They served over 300 persons the first six months of 2014 Families receive diapers, formula, toiletries, food and clothing. No one is turned away as there are no income limits. Last Christmas, Salvation Army needed a group to help a family of 8 in addition to the 35 they had already. They were able to provide food and gifts for the children, giving them a Christmas they would always remember.

Hilliard United Methodist Preschool (Franklin County)

Robin Ozbolt 614-876-7180

Grant:                       $3,150

Hilliard UMC is known for its outstanding advocacy for preschoolers and their families. To continue this practice, the program will be offered to at least four children from low income families who would otherwise be at risk educationally. Hilliard UMC will match the amount of grant in order to offer these scholarships. The preschool typically enrolls approximately 205 children each school year.

Hopewell UMC Elder VBS (Pickaway County)

Taye Moody 740-703-4953

    Grant:                    $1,300    

This ministry takes a traveling theme-based Vacation Bible School into the nursing homes in three counties: Pickaway, Fairfield, and Franklin, each month on 2 consecutive days. Volunteers help each resident with crafts, songs, games, skits and snacks. The theme this year is “Jump in the Fruit Bowl with Jesus”. Even residents who are not able to communicate will respond to the songs with sign language, tears and laughter. All are blessed with this ministry.

Johnstown- Northridge Freedom School ( Licking County)

Eva Marie Wolfe 740-817-3119

    Grant:                          $4,000

Johnstown-Northridge Freedom School is a children’s six week summer program in northwest Licking County,  with 43 children aged Kindergarten through 5th grade. One parent on our newly-formed Board of Directors stated that her son wants to become a teacher now. He took some of the Freedom School techniques to his school-year classroom and the teacher adopted some of them.

Kindway (Franklin County)

Christine Money 614-895-1882

    Grant:      $2,500    

Kindway (EMBARK) mobilizes 65 volunteers from a variety of denominations to provide Christ-centered and best practice reentry programming to incarcerated men at the Marion Correctional Institution and women at the Ohio Reformatory for Women. The program engages with male and female offenders who are graduates of Kairos Prison Ministry at least one year prior to release and continues with them at least one year post release. 65 men and women have completed EMBARAK, 24 have transitioned to the community, none have re-offended.

LaRue UMC A Child’s Heart Creative Outreach Ministry (Marion County)

Jeanie Park 740-499-2424

    Grant:                  $1,500        

This is a weekly afternoon after school ministry to 30 children in the LaRue area. They also provide a monthly community dinner serving 75 persons per month. A young lady, now a sophomore in high school, benefitted from A Child’s Heart. She is shy but wanted to be a helper with the program. She has become a role model for the younger children. Her family volunteers regularly with the community dinner.

Linworth UMC Hilltop House Ministry (Franklin County)

    Grant:     $3,000

Linworth has renovated the house that was donated to them so it can now become a community center and an efficiency apartment for two seminary students. They are building relationships within the community. At the beginning of the 2014-2015 school year they partnered with West Broad Street Elementary School and are providing reading buddies for children identified by the school. Free back-to-school haircuts were offered to children in need.

Livingston UMC Rosemary’s Cupboard Food Pantry (Franklin County)

Ginny Clear/ 614-224-2006

    Grant:    $2,000    

This choice food pantry operates Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday of the last full week of the month 9:30-11:30am. Ginny received a request for a bedbound client of Home Healthcare. The client had only rotten food in his refrigerator and no other food in the house. A caregiver had not provided properly for this gentleman and his dietary needs. The Food Pantry was able to give him nutritious food.

Livingston UMC Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio (Franklin County)

Mariellyn Dunlap Grace 614-227-0301

    Grant:                                          $2,000    

This ministry provides free, ongoing prescription medications to poor and marginalized populations within Franklin County. It serves over 600 persons per month. In August 2013, Sherry, a patient at the Pharmacy shared she had walked into a church, not knowing what to expect or how she would be treated. She was used to being treated poorly because of her chronic pain and being prone to frequent falls. At the Charitable Pharmacy, she was treated with respect and talked to like the human she is. Meds were explained to her and people showed they were genuinely concerned about helping her.

Maynard Ave. UMC A Good Start Kindergarten Readiness (Franklin County)

Rev. Patricia Wagner 614-263-5145

    Grant:    $2,500    

A five week intensive Kindergarten Readiness program for up to 25 at-risk children entering school. They have enlisted the help of the congregation, parents in the neighborhood and the University District Freedom School to recruit families into the program. Teachers are recruited through Ohio Wesleyan Early Childhood program. An arrangement with OWU allows undergraduates majoring in Early Childhood to get course credit for their work in the program.

Four persons who live in poverty are on the staff. The Administrative officer, has come out of human trafficking, and three high school students from the neighborhood were hired through the Godman Guild.

Mt. Sterling Community Center (Pickaway County)

Annie Tomlinson 740-869-2453 msccinc@embarqmail,.com

    Grant:     $2,000

The Community Center provides a food pantry/clothing room, tutoring, Alcoholics Anonymous, professional counseling service for adults, Bible studies, sewing classes, homemaking classes, education on wellness and health, job preparation services, piano lessons, GED classes for over an average of 1,000 recipients per month. A new software system, created by the Mid Ohio Food Bank is being utilized to track important information on participants and summarize monthly statistics for both the food pantry and summer produce market.

New Horizons UMC Feeding the Poor Ministries (Franklin County)

Gene Brundige 614-204-4125

    Grant:    $1,570    

New Horizons serves several meals to over 1000 persons each month providing physical and spiritual sustenance. Gene writes. “We see more people taking advantage of these ministries. We see new volunteers from within the congregation taking ownership in them. The attitude of acceptance of the poor, and those distanced from the church, is a thing of beauty to observe within the congregation.”

New Horizons UMC Christ’s Cupboard on Wheels (Franklin County)

Rev. Gene Brundige 614-204-4125

    Grant:     $2,000

CCOW provides a hot meal every Friday night, regardless of the weather to their friends who reside in some of the homeless camps on the west side of Columbus. Recently we have expanded our weekly food pick-ups to drop off fresh produce to the residents of Briggsdale Apartments (previously homeless and addicted people). The availability of fresh produce on a weekly basis is greatly appreciated. Our monthly produce distributions have expanded to ten months each year. Each month we serve more than 1,300 people.

North Union County Community Meal (Union County)

Rhonda Burggraf 740-943-3079

    Grant:     $  750    

Six United Methodist churches have come together for this ministry to provide lunches for children and adults during the summer months. There are families in our community that struggle to get food on the table. Rhonda writes, “People wait for us to arrive at the park at 11:30. There are always people ‘in line’ to eat before all the food is out of the car. When we first started the ministry people would stand by and wait for ‘us’ to get out the food and set up. Now when we arrive, recipients unload the cars, and help get everything ready. Likewise, when we are ready to leave, recipients help tear down, load the car, and take care of recycling.”

Oakland Park UMC Community Meals (Franklin County)

Billy Krack 614-515-7869

    Grant:      $1,500    

The Community Meals Ministry serves a free hot breakfast to homeless, marginally poor and hungry in our community on the 2nd Sunday of every month. We also offer a free hot lunch the 4th Sunday of odd months. During the school year we cater lunch to each grade at Como Avenue Elementary School throughout the school year during their monthly PTO meeting to encourage parent participation. Billy writes, “it is hard to point out just one life being changed when we see so much transformation going on around us. Our community consists of the elderly, marginally poor and those in alcohol and drug addiction support groups. To see tight, gaunt faces with impossible dispositions, soften and open up is the very essence of why we do what we do.”

Ostrander UMC Study Club (Delaware County)

Marvin Graham 740-666-2131

        Grant:                $2,000

Ostrander UMC is located next to an elementary school and a library in a town with many families with children in walking distance. We were praying for a meaningful way to minister to the need of our community. We heard about the Live Free program and the Study Club was born as we considered ways we could continue to build relationships that the Live Free program would help us forge. One child in the program is especially challenging to accommodate in a group. One of the volunteers buddied up with him the first day and helps with the class. With the encouragement of the parents, he is making progress and we hope he will be able to make a smooth transition into kindergarten.

Parkview UMC Healing Hands Food Pantry (Franklin County)

Carol Adams 614-506-6814

    Grant:         $2,000

The Helping Hands Food Pantry provides 4 days of emergency food items to individuals and families on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Our food items come from the Mid-Ohio Food Bank; fourteen families are served per day, serving an average of 320 individuals each month. Robert was a recipient of the food pantry a number of years ago. He was a quiet, humble man. Over time he opened up to pantry staff and asked if he could help out. He has become our number one volunteer with knowledge of clients, procedures, etc. We rely heavily on his hard work and commitment to the cause. He logs the most volunteer hours out of all the volunteers.

Pataskala UMC Bridge over Pataskala Kids Eat Free/Book Buddies (Licking County)

Lynn Meadows 740-927-6123

    Grant:       $2,000

The first goal of this ministry is to continue to serve nutritious lunches to children up to and including age 18. Secondly, we want to see all 3rd graders pass their reading efficiency tests with the Book Buddies ministry. Todd, a gentleman in our Pataskala community stopped by and volunteered to serve children in our community. Todd, probably in his mid-40’s, came to help almost every day. He always had a smile on his face, was always had a kind word for everyone. One day Todd was wearing a leg brace. He had been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. Todd is pushing back against this disease. He greets all the children, mans the pop machine and is making a huge impact on the lives of those coming for lunch.

Peace UMC Helping Hands Medical Equipment (Pickerington-Fairfield County)

Brett Kim 614-397-9384

    Grant:    $1,500    

This ministry provides durable medical equipment at no cost to over 100 people in need each month. Items are delivered when persons lack transportation. We received a call from Mt. Carmel West Hospital asking for a wheelchair for a fellow who had fallen from the roof he was working on and injured his spinal cord - it was delivered to the hospital. A few days later he was going home and they needed a hospital bed and additional equipment which weas delivered to a relative’s home in Grove City. Later there were additional needs and they were supplied. The man is young, just 31 years old, and had no income or insurance. He spoke only a little English but was so grateful for the way we cared for his needs. He has now moved to California, but was able to take some of our equipment with him. And one young man in a very tough situation knows that people love and care about him. What an awesome ministry God has us doing.

Pleasant View UMC Food Pantry (Licking County)

Sandy Strausbaugh 740-645-4978

 Grant:    $1,612                

Pleasant View Food Pantry operates out of the basement of the Pleasant View UMC. The pantry receives frozen, canned, boxed and bagged food items monthly from the Food Pantry network of Licking County. Clients visit one time each month with additional visits permitted each year for a total of 15 visits per year. Sandy Strausbaugh shares her story: “I have volunteered at our food pantry since its inception in May 2003. This is such a rewarding experience for me. I have been legally blind since 2000 and am limited as to what I can do. At the pantry, I feel useful and that I’m doing something to help. Our clients are so appreciative and tell us so. It makes me feel good. I plan to work at the pantry as long as I can do so”.

Prospect St UMC Disciple Bible Study Prison Ministry (Marion County)

Linda Spillman-Kear 740-751-5202

    Grant:                                           $1,200

This ministry takes place at the North Central Correctional Complex in Marion on Wed, Thurs and Sat. Dan, a former Disciple student at NCCC, comes to the Neighborhood Supper at our church. His wife refers to it as “date night.” They do not need the free meal. Dan comes to spread the Gospel with others, as a way of paying it forward for the spiritual guidance he received in our classes.

Prospect St UMC Laundry Love (Marion County)

Linda Cook 740-389-2820

    Grant:    $1,800

This ministry of Prospect St UMC is a satellite of the Leapin’ Outreach Free Store in Marion. People sign up at the Free Store and then meet loving volunteers at the Laundry-mat who assist them with their laundry. Laundry Love is also a chance to build relationships and pray with families while washing and drying clothes. Someone in our group was never a volunteer and after helping out a couple of months, she mentioned that it really wasn’t that “bad.” These folks are just people who need help. It was nice to hear she felt comfortable in volunteering.

Prospect St. Leapin Outreach Free Store ( Marion County)

Ed Crawford 740-726-2278

    Grant:    $800

This ministry is in a former church building and serves 1,000 persons per month. We have expanded our outreach area to include the Neighborhood Supper groups held on the 3rd Fridays of the month. The greatest need is personal hygiene products. Most people do not donate these items such as; soap, deodorant, tooth brushes, socks, and underwear just to name a few. This required the purchase of these items for all age groups to assist with the needy.

Richwood First UMC North Union County Free Shop (Union County)

Jo Ann Stillings 740-943-3079

    Grant:    $2,500    

The Free Store is open three days each month, 1st and 3rd Saturdays and 2nd Thursday. Breakfast is provided to clients on Saturdays. One day each quarter, we have a special day just for seniors who reside in the local senior housing apartments. They are transported by a bus. They also take orders, fill them at the pantry, return and deliver the supplies to each apartment, usually making 16-20 deliveries. The pantry currently serves over 200 persons each month.

Riverside UMC Rahab’s Hideaway (Franklin County)

Rebecca Scott-Ozcomert 614-607-6297

    Grant:    $3,000    

Rahab’s Hideaway provides assistance to victims of human trafficking - a shelter, drop-in center, advocacy, job training and community education. Two ladies from the Rahab Hideaway have successfully registered and started their first year in College. The center for change is expanding to a new location where we will serve not only victims of human trafficking but also their children therefore breaking the cycle.

St Luke’s UMC Friendship Ministry with Persons with Disabilities (Franklin County)

    Grant:    $1,800    

This is an ongoing ministry to provide Christian Education and a church home to persons with disabilities in Northwest Columbus. They are establishing monthly social gatherings targeting the congregation and local disability community. One such event was a St. Patrick’s Day dinner in March. One of the most vital aspects of this ministry is the way it promotes a sense of community within our small group of persons with disabilities. They truly are becoming Christ for each other. One of the relationships that developed is a friendship between two young women, one who has autism and one who struggles with mental health issues. Their sensitivity to each other is evident in the way they encourage and support one another, both at church and their personal lives.

St. Marks UMC A Child’s Garden Daycare (Franklin County)

Nancy Day- Achauer 614-878-6520

    Grant:    $750

This ministry serves a low income multi-ethnic neighborhood, where English is no longer the primary language. A Child’s Garden provides a sense of safety and security serving 80 children. One of our new families shared they had visited several local daycare centers but chose ours because we showed compassion for their situation. Some of the centers had turned them away because one of their children was diagnosed with ADHD and had issues with anger management. After 2 weeks at our center the mother commented, “Thank you so much for not being judgmental and for being willing to work with my child in spite of her issues. We’ve been turned away and kicked out by so many centers because of our daughter’s behavior. This is the first place we’ve been where our daughter was accepted.”

St. Marks UMC Kids’ Zone (Franklin County)

Nancy Day-Achauer 614-878-6520

    Grant:    $750

Kids’ Zone is a new outreach ministry at St Marks UMC to children in the community, an evangelism ministry developed to reach children in unchurched and nominally religious families in the Westland area. They meet the second Friday of each month; following the blessing children eat a light, kid-friendly meal. In chapel they pray, sing songs and hear a Bible story. Bible-themed crafts, games and activities fill the rest of the evening. The evening ends with a closing prayer. A young lad with a long history of behavioral problems has shown a dramatic positive change in his behavior. Mother indicated this change was a result of the Kid’s Zone; he can hardly wait for the next gathering and reminds his daycare teacher that he has to be extra good that week so he can attend Kids’ Zone on Friday. He especially loves the Bible stories.

Summit Station UMC Preschool and Childcare (Licking County)

Ann Marie Carley 740-927-3540

    Grant:    $1,500    

The ministry provides families a Christian based option for preschool, latch key and summer day camp. As we educate children on the foundations of Christian living our goal is to not just touch the lives of the children we serve, but also their families through various means. We had a family join the Youth Center after attending an outreach event at Summit Station UMC. They came from a different child care center because of the atmosphere they encountered here at SS UMC. This family then referred two additional families to our center.

Unionville Center UMC Community Meal (Union County)

Rick and Janet Kaufman 614-504-5782

    Grant:    $932

The Free Community Meal at UCUMC began April 25,2013 with the idea of bringing the community closer together. A small percentage of the community attend church regularly, but most are unchurched. It is our hope that the project will do more than furnish a free meal but that people will come closer together and closer to Jesus Christ. Gary started visiting our church and wanted to help with the project. His involvement inspired him to create a UCUMC page on Facebook by which we now also advertise the meals.

Union County Outreach Team Community Kitchen (Union County)

Maryanne Wenner 937-578-8527

        Grant:    $2,000    

The Community Kitchen serves a free meal to anyone that comes in the door, no questions asked. Four meals a week are served (2 lunches/2 dinners) at the Hope Center in Marysville, Ohio. The Hope Center is close to town and we have many that walk there. The Hope Center also houses personal needs, food pantry and clothes closet - the hours coincide with one of our meals making things a little more cohesive for those who come through our door.

Westside Free Store (Franklin County)

Barb Rice 614-519-9022

    Grant:    $4,000    

The Westside Free Store provides support to persons and families with limited or no resources furnishing them with clothing and house hold goods. Sarah’s Kitchen provides a well balanced hot meal on Saturdays. They serve over 1000 shoppers per month. Lisa B. shares how the Free Store has helped her. “Now in recovery from drugs and coming out of recovery, I had no clothes. I gained weight rapidly and they clothed me. In my transition they had resources for me on hand that led me on the right path. Also, at times I had no food and they blessed me with a meal on Saturday and bread and snacks through the week. They have blessed me to be able to go forth. I have met people who shared their blessings and I am thankful for the Westside Free Store.”

William Street UMC (WS2) Homework Help Program (Delaware County)

Becky Tucker 740-363-4741 rtucker@marysville.

    Grant:    $2,000     

(WS2) is a free homework help program held at William St. UMC for fifth and sixth graders, a partnership between the Literacy Coalition, Willis Intermediate School and William St. UMC. The (WS)2 program provides a wonderful opportunity to allow those who have the gift of compassion, patience, nurturing and love for children to reach out to students attending school just across the street from our church. This ministry draws many members who are, or have been, in the field of education. Their relationship with Ohio Wesleyan also brings in others who have the talent and desire to work with children. Not only do the students benefit from this program, it is helpful to their family as a whole. A survey completed by classroom teachers at the end of the school year told of success for several of the students. “The positive social relationships one of the children experienced at (WS)2 has been invaluable. She has been getting the positive attention that she needs. This has helped her classroom behavior.”

William Street UMC Weekend Helper (Delaware County)

Nancy Miller 740-363-5333

    Grant:    $2,000

The overall purpose of Weekend Helper is to help families of young children have enough food for them over the weekend to bridge the gap between Friday’s lunch and Monday’s breakfast at Woodward Elementary School. 75% of the students in this school are eligible for free or reduced meals. The need for help over the weekend became clear when we heard from a school counselor with this story: “We had only been receiving 12 bags a week from William Street, but this year there were 22 families of children receiving free or reduced meals at school who requested this assistance. I had to set up a schedule where most of the children only received a bag every other week. One week during the winter, a little girl came to my office and asked if she was getting a bag of food, and when I told her that this wasn’t her week, she started to cry.” When the story was shared, the leaders vowed we would make 22 bags each week.