From painting at local outreach centers, cooking in the Share soup kitchen, or walking children to school on the Walking School Bus, the members of Vancouver First are involved in outreach throughout the community and the regional Washington area. We would love for you to join us in as many of these opportunities as you can. If you are interested or have questions about any of the activities that you see listed please contact Elizabeth in the church office.
Each July and August, Vancouver First UMC collects school supplies for our partner schools in the Vancouver School District. This year, we have also been asked to collect new socks for the children to start off the school year on the right foot.We’ve set the challenge to collect 500 pairs of new socks by the end of August.
In addition to the socks for all ages, school supplies need are: crayons, pencils, markers, glue sticks, erasers, composition notebooks (college-rule), spiral notebooks (wide-rule), notebook paper.
So when you’re out doing your school supply shopping or see those great sale ads, think of the children and purchase some of these supplies. You may bring donations to the church office during the week, or on Sunday mornings for the rest of the summer.
- Scrip: To help fund our outreach activities, we sell scrip gift cards. Each month you can order gift cards from hundreds of vendors. You will receive the full face value on all SCRIP cards that you purchase. In addition, the business will donate a percentage of the sale back to the church for outreach. It is a Win-Win situation. Use SCRIP whenever you shop. The next deadline is Sept. 14 (you will receive the cards on September 23). The order form and a list of all available vendors can be found below. For more information on Scrip, please click here.
- SHARE lunches: Each Thursday for the past thirty years, teams from First Church cooks and serves a lunch at Share House. If you would like to help with this once a month commitment, we can find a team for you to join. No experience necessary!
- Backpacks for Veterans: Backpacks used by middle and high school students are the perfect size to carry the veteran’s belongings. Instead of throwing your old backpack away or stuffing it in the closet, donate it for homeless veterans in the area. If you have a backpack to donate, please bring it to the church lobby on Sunday mornings.
Recent Past Events:
- Fit ‘n Fun at First was bigger and better this year! Our 2nd annual 5k run/walk and 1k fun run for the kids, along with the carnival, was a fun day for the church and our neighbors. Mark your calendars now and join us on May 30, 2015!
- During Mission Possible in January, we made 200 “corner bags” to be handed out to the homeless; our congregation prepared 170 backpacks for the Share backpack program, ensuring that kids in our partner schools would have a weekend’s worth of food to share with their families. We made “thank you” gifts and handmade cards for all of the teachers and staff at Washington Elementary School; we installed shelving storage for Washington School’s Resource Center as well. We also brought months’ worth of hygiene supplies and tied 30 fleece blankets for our friends at the WHO Shelter, as well as 25 gallons of homemade soup for them to warm up with at dinner time.
- WHO Shelter – We finished a successful week of volunteering at the St. Paul’s WHO Shelter. Thank you to all of those volunteers that brought food, and served on our 24 shifts during those weeks.
- We had more than 15 people in our Sanctuary wrapping 225 gifts for Christmas this year. We were blessed to 110 individuals with Christmas gifts this year.
- Trunk or Treat was again our biggest event of the year! Over 500 munchkins came through in costume, playing games and collecting candy from our congregation. Always a great time, regardless of weather, this year we were blessed with beautiful sunshine and laughter.
- Literary Night at Washington Elementary: We joined the Washington Elementary community during their “Books and Bugs” Literary Night on June 10. We cooked and served dinner to the school’s children and their families. What a great way to end the school year!