WMCN Briefs

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

nbEditor's note: Manna Media/West Michigan Christian News introduces a new feature to its website that will report topical information related to the regional Christian community.

Degage Ministries expands services

Downtown Grand Rapids homeless shelter Degage Ministries continues to adapt to meet the needs of the most vulnerable, thanks to partnerships and donations from local businesses and Degage patrons employed by the organization. The organization has expanded and adapted services to include:

• Nearly 300 free daily to-go meals, not normally provided at no charge. This is two to three times the normal amount of meals served.

• Hygiene services, including showers and laundry, three days each week.

• Private hotel rooms for women staying in the Open Door Women's Center.

• Increased staff hours to meet needs normally supported by volunteers.

• Increased daily cleaning, new handwashing stations, temperature and health assessments and facemasks.

Degage expects these increased services to have an unexpected financial impact of at least $300,000. Community partners have stepped in to help with donations of food items: Tyson Foods, Freshii, West Michigan Catering, Request Foods, Starbucks, Ferris Coffee and Nut and Edible Arrangements, as well as LaGrave Avenue Christian Reformed Church for donation of space to serve meals.

Christian Girls Club launches GEMS On The Go

GEMS Girls' Clubs, a Grand Rapids-based nonprofit known worldwide for connecting girls, has launched GEMS On The GO, a website and Instagram page which aims to keep middle school girls connected to fun, friendship and faith, as social distancing continues to keep girls from friends and social activities. To help keep girls connected, while also providing helpful resources to tween parents, GEMS is providing a safe and welcoming meeting place for girls between the ages of 9 and 12, where they can find activities and encouragement for their emotional and spiritual needs, as well as provide simple resources parents can use to keep their tween girls engaged and connected.

Mel Trotter Ministries sets date for casting call

Mel Trotter Ministries has set June 6 for the casting call for its movie, "One Life at a Time," that will star Dean Cain. The movie needs a few hundred local actors and extras. Those interested are asked to meet from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at ResLife Church (5100 Ivanrest Ave SW, Grandville. For more information, visit www.meltrotter.org/mtmmovie.

CLC Network rebranded All Belong Center for Inclusive Education

Forty-year old faith-based organization CLC Network, 4340 Burlingame Ave., Wyoming, has rebranded as All Belong Center for Inclusive Education. The effort is a result of a yearlong process to create and communicate a brand that better reflects its work of providing support services and enabling inclusive education in Christ-centered schools and churches to ensure that persons of all abilities belong. Agency officials believe that the new name more clearly communicates its mission and positions the nonprofit to equip schools and churches to create a culture of belonging for persons of all abilities. The redefined, bold organizational identity clearly articulates the heart of All Belong's mission—that persons of all abilities belong within Christ-centered community. All Belong was founded as Christian Learning Center in 1979 and is widely known as the pioneer of inclusive education in Christian schools.

Author Information
Paul R. Kopenkoskey
Author: Paul R. KopenkoskeyWebsite:
Paul R. Kopenkoskey is a full-time freelance writer and editor for an assortment of publications including Grand Rapids Magazine, Grand Rapids Business Journal, and Faith Grand Rapids magazine. He has completed his first novel with the working title, Karl Beguiled. He and his wife, Barb, live in Wyoming, Michigan. They have three children and five grandchildren.

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