Blog & Updates
|Posted on June 5, 2015 at 11:55 AM|
Since last month, we have big, BIG news about our continuing efforts to expand both the shop and the outreach!
We have reached our goal for Phase One!
We have had so many people come up to us and congratulate us on this accomplishment. But we can take no credit for this. All we have accomplished this month is due to the generosity of our community residents! Those who donated directly, on our GoFundMe site, bought the pens and vases Lauren made, participated in our Bag Sale (where one dollar from each sale went to the fund), who donated art to the auction, bought art at the auction and, in no small part, to the incredibly generous woman who came in the other day and gave us the final $170 we needed. I cannot thank Beth Moseley enough.
With the completion of Phase One of the project, we are discussing the best way to handle the GoFundMe aspect of our fundraising. As it stands right now, we will leave the funding page active. We may just edit the page and keep it (so we can keep the same link for your and our convenience), or we may start a new campaign.
The reason for this is that in our search for grants, there are out there grants called Challenge Grants. These funding sources require requestors to raise a portion of the needed money. Often it is half of the money, where the grantmaker will then fund the other half. Sometimes it is a little more generous, like 25 and then they provide the 75%.
To this end, we will have a GoFundMe requesting $187,500, which is 25% of the money needed for the property (Phase Two). I know this seems like a lot of money. But so is the $750,000 price tag for the land we need.
But do not let this daunt you. It isn't daunting me! I know this project will see completion! I know we will expand! We must!
So we move on. I am looking at grantmakers, working on the basics of the grant which I will then tailor to each potential funding source.
We are still selling the pens and vases I mentioned in last month's post. We are accepting direct donations at the shop. And, as I stated above, we have a GoFundMe (www.gofundme.com/t75has) campaign. We are also looking at other potential avenues of fundraising, such as a music event. Many of our local musicians have offered their support for our project. We are looking at venues, dates, etc to do this.
Now that we reached our goal and have the database we need, we look forward to getting deeper into Phase Two of the project. This is the purchase of the property for the project. We have spoken with our realtor (who also happens to be President of the board for Hands of Hope) to look into the desired land in Milford Township, PA.
And to remind you all, here is the rest of the project's goals:
Phase Three is the construction of a multi-funtion building that will house 1) the new thrift shop 2) offices for Pike County Hands of Hope (their Facebook page is (www.facebook.com/pages/Pike-County-Hands-Of-Hope/1494982297439345), 3) a meeting room / gallery / classroom area. (More on these things a little further down.)
Phase Four will be (if we get the property we want) the renovation of an existing building for use as a Congregate Dining Hall. (Note - if we don't get the property - that is, if someone buys it before we can - we will have to build this from scratch and it will cost considerably more.)
And finally, Phase Five is the construction of a 7-unit temporary housing apartment building.
This is a very ambitious project. Please pass this information along to everyone you know. We can use donations, support and prayers in order for this vision to become a reality.
Some More Info
(I know we said this before, but some readers will not have read those previous posting.)
The conditions our volunteers work in the existing thrift shop are less than ideal. Not only will the construction of a new building offer us the ability to carry more items we do not have room for right now and items we are not allowed to unless we have a permit / equipment / space to process them, but our dedicated volunteers will have a safe, clean environment in order to do their work. Plus, many people have offered to volunteer but cannot due to the space we have (close quarters, dusty, poor lighting, cold in winter, hot in summer, musty). Therefore, if we make this better, we will get more volunteers and thus be able to do more for the community.
The aforementioned items - like padded furniture, baby bunting, pillows and quilts - will then have a place to be processed. Right now, we cannot by PA law sell these items. But with the larger space, there will be ample room to do this.
With a new building, we will also be able to have a separate entrance for donations. Currently, we carry them through a packed store full of customers. This makes the shopping experience less than pleasant.
With a single floor layout, we will also be able to return to offering shopping to our elderly and special needs customers who may not be able to navigate the stairs in our current shop. We sued to have seniors from Belle Reve and Milford Senior Care come, and we offered them places to sit, drinks and snacks. With a new store, we will be able to do this once again. And with the larger, more open layout, our sales should increase exponentially, thus helping us help more people.
The classrooms on the second floor (accessible by stairs AND an elevator, will be open to all. We will put out invitations to agencies and groups such as CDD and veterans groups. There will be painting classes, jewelry making classes, ceramics classes and more (as suggestions for what the community wants). Plus we can offer seminars on healthy eating, healthy living, as well as survival classes such as how to balance your checkbook and budget for household needs.
The second floor space will also be available for non-profit groups to use for meetings, training and such.
After speaking with the President of Pike County Hands of Hope, we decided to build the 7-unit apartments so they could temporarily house people in need while they find something more permanent. And they will now have seven more places to put at-risk people up during the emergency cold weather of our region.
So, as you can see, we have lots happening. We will continue updating our progress.
Thank you and have a blessed day.
The Staff at Calling All Angels Mission