Browsing Category: Community Outreach

Hope for Families in San Antonio

“We hit the jackpot!” exclaims Sarah and Dre Valdez’s youngest son as he triumphantly holds two grocery bags loaded with food. He’s only seven, but even he understands the importance of what took place for his family — and thousands of others — at the San Antonio Community Event.

Like many people who attend Convoy’s Community Events, times have been tough for the Valdez family. Both Sarah and Dre recently lost their jobs and have been unable to find work. The free goods and services they received gave them a hand up during a difficult season in their life.

“You forget yourself and your burdens for a while,” says their mom, Sarah. “It was a blessing to come to Convoy of Hope and get things we needed.”

With smiles as wide as the Alamodome, the family of six poses for a photo. Afterward, they collect the new shoes and bags of groceries they received at the event and step into their futures with a renewed sense of hope.

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Community Outreach

Breast Cancer Awareness Month With Convoy of Hope

Have you ever wondered what happens inside the National Breast Cancer Foundation tent at a Convoy of Hope event? It’s a fair question since what we give out is harder to quantify than the groceries, shoes or haircuts that some of the other partnering organizations provide. What are we giving out you ask? With the help of our volunteers, we are providing vital breast health educational resources, but ultimately we are providing empowerment. We want every woman who comes through our tent to leave knowing how to be more proactive about her breast health.

One of the gifts we distribute in the tent is a booklet that helps recipients learn how to become more aware of their own breast health. It also includes questions women should ask of themselves and their doctors in order to take a more active role in assessing their personal risk factors. We don’t just pass this booklet out and send guests away, however. Trained volunteers review it with each guest, emphasizing its importance, and connecting them with local resources if they need access to screenings.

The information in this booklet is so valuable that we believe everyone should have access to it. That’s why this October, in honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, NBCF is offering our new eBook, What Every Woman Needs to Know, as a free download to anyone who requests it. This book is filled with much of the same great information we provide to Convoy guests in a printed format. Request your free copy today!

We’d be remiss if we didn’t take this opportunity to thank all the volunteers who make our Convoy tent experience such a warm, welcoming and enriching experience for the guests we serve. Thank you for joining in our mission of Helping Women Now®! We couldn’t do it without you!

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Community Outreach / Partner Spotlight

2016 Community Events season kicks off

2016 will be Convoy of Hope’s 22nd year of serving tens of thousands of Guests of Honor at Community Events where we provide groceries, shoes, haircuts, family portraits, health exams, career services and much more.

At 28 Community Events across the United States last year, 23,000 volunteers served more than 82,000 guests.

“We had no idea of all that we would receive here, the love that we would feel,” says Mary, an honored guest at our Beckley, West Virginia, event. “Today we found hope.”

Mary was one of several unemployed guests at the event. Many families who attend our events are considered America’s working poor — the underemployed. Such families don’t often receive social benefits because they’re not unemployed, but still don’t make enough money to provide everything their family needs.

Community Events are designed to help those who need a hand up to get by.

“[It’s] not just about giving out free stuff,” says David Moore, city alderman of Chicago, where 10,000 guests attended last year’s event. “This [event] was about giving people hope to press on another day, another month and another year.”

Steve Pulis, signature events director for Convoy of Hope, concurs.

“Many people want their neighborhoods to change for the better,” he says. “They want peace rather than violence and crime. We’re here to restore a sense of hope by helping out with a few of life’s necessities.”

Pulis says those necessities are sometimes enough to change the future for families struggling to make ends meet.

“It’s unbelievable how many guests tell us they couldn’t afford shoes for their kids,” he says. “Because of our supporters, we get to be a part of helping families make it through another week.”

Already, 17 events are scheduled for the 2016 season. For the complete schedule, visit convoyofhope.org/events.

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Community Outreach / Join The Convoy / Program Updates
Hundreds of guests received a hot meal at the event. Hundreds of guests received a hot meal at the event.

Being homeless in a home

Since 2010, Community Partnership of the Ozarks has hosted an annual event to serve the homeless population in Springfield, Missouri. This year was no different.

Hundreds of volunteers came together last week to serve more than 600 guests. While those in need received groceries, haircuts, job services, health services and more, the item in highest demand was simple — socks. In the winter weather, many of those in attendance rely on items like socks to survive bitterly cold nights.

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Kyle, 53, spoke with us about his struggles. He’s experienced some injuries and deaths in his family that have required a lot from him financially, worsening his situation. He is unemployed, but gets by doing odd jobs and yard work. Kyle has not had proper plumbing in his house for two years.

“It’s like being homeless in a home,” Kyle says. “I have a home, but I’m trying not to lose it.”

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A sewer line collapsed and he does not have the resources he needs to get everything fixed. Kyle says that while it’s hard not having water, he has to choose what he spends his money on.

“I make enough to eat,” he says.

Kyle adds that events like The Hope Connection are important because sometimes people just need a little bit of help to get them through.

We also met Shawna, 42, and her 7-year-old daughter, Sadie. When asked what her favorite part of the day was, Sadie smiles from ear-to-ear and says, “I got to play.”

Convoy of Hope is proud to attend this event each year and offer items like groceries, hygiene kits, socks, batteries and blankets.

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More than 1,000 bags of groceries were distributed and guests were connected with organizations that can help them beyond today — giving them hope for tomorrow.

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Community Outreach / Field Story / Program Updates