When you drive by, you may think that nothing has been happening at The Haven of Portage County, but people are spreading the word and things are moving. The board of directors is still in the investigatory stage with the building renovations, working with architects and local government to determine what can be done with zoning classifications and state regulations. A few small groups have done more cleanup and work on the building and that work has all paid off short-term, as right now, The Center of Hope is able to use the building for their holiday gift boxes.
Every year, The Center needs a large space to store, sort, and pack the boxes for Thanksgiving and Christmas. This year, they'll have over 800 boxes and we're glad the building can be used for a great cause while waiting on renovations.
The Haven has also had some very generous donations recently: a full coffee bar setup from Kent State University, money and food from a Kent State student group, linens from Paris Industries, and the generous contributions from the sponsors and attendees at the Night of Hope - over $8,000! And although building renovations can't start yet, there are things the board knows they'll need to furnish it and operate, so they were able to purchase some nice kitchen equipment at extremely low prices. God is providing what we need and it's exciting to see everyone working together!
Since The Haven's doors aren't open yet, The Center of Hope will be operating as the warming center again this winter. When the temperature goes below 10 degrees, they'll have their doors open all night and we need people to staff those nights. You can help the homeless right now by volunteering for a shift this winter. Each night has four shifts and each shift needs manned by two people - eight people each night. If everyone we know volunteered for just one shift during the winter months, we'd more than have them all covered. Please, email us and volunteer right now.
As the board works through plans and approvals for renovations, we can continue to spread the word and more important, pray. What can you pray for?
- God to open the hearts and minds of public officials to approve and support architectural proposals and working plans for the services that The Haven will offer.
- Fundraising efforts: It's going to take money to complete the renovations and money to operate. God knows who will step forward; we can pray right now for Him to be glorified in the giving.
- Community partnership - Lots of people in our county are excited about the needs that The Haven will meet. Pray that the community will step up and get involved practically and financially.
We will influence the community for Christ - this goal is why The Haven was started. We're helping in His name, for His glory; pray that in all we do, both as PCC and The Haven, that Jesus Christ will receive the glory.