SCAPC Presbyterian Women Mission Partners
In addition to our hands-on volunteer help, each month we collect supplies and cash donations for the following:
· Living Waters for the World mission teams empower their partners to provide clean, sustainable water and health education for their communities. Teams from SCAPC have worked with Living Waters to provide and install a clean water purification system for El Fuerte Presbyterian Church in Cardenas, Cuba, and to revisit at least annually.
· Eden House is a ministry for women who have survived prostitution, addiction and human trafficking. The home accepts women for two years, free of charge, while providing space for healing, programs for recovery and opportunities for job training. SCAPC PW assist by providing Thanksgiving Dinner, hosting an Advent party to decorate the house, and preparing Easter baskets with pampering supplies.
· Program of Hope Homeless Ministry, housed at First Presbyterian Church, provides housing/shelter vouchers, bus tokens, lunches, hygiene items, clothing, counseling, prayer, worship, and financial support each Wednesday. PW volunteers join the SCAPC Community Ministry Committee in preparing and serving lunches two months of the year.
· Carrollton Christmas and Summer Camps are run directly by SCAPC. They provide nurturing and enriching activities including art, music, drama, academic enrichment and athletics. Campers also enjoy special events with local guest speakers.
· Raintree Children and Family Services is a social service agency giving hope to abandoned, abused or neglected children through group housing, single family foster care, and developmental disabilities case management.
· J.W. Johnson School Community Garden is a place where students, parents, faculty members and neighbors of the school gather to relax, play, and learn more about gardening and the importance of fresh produce in their diet. PW volunteers will assist RHINO in building a gathering space in the Garden through group work days.
· SCAPC/RHINO Flood Relief: In response to the devastating flooding in Baton Rouge in August 2016, PW donated and delivered breakfast, lunch and snacks for the volunteer work teams for their first seven work days. Many volunteered themselves and/or made donations to the relief fund.
Annual Offerings & Collections
· Thank Offering
Every year at St. Charles on the Sunday preceding Thanksgiving, our congregation donates to the PW Thank Offering, a churchwide offering that is ultimately overseen by the Creative Ministries Offering Committee of Presbyterian Women. 40% of the funds support health ministries throughout the world, and the remaining 60% fund new creative ideas for mission. In our Synod (Synod of the Sun), 2016 recipients include the “Independence on the Move” program in Bryan, Texas (a mobile outreach program for the disabled) and Capital Area Alliance for the Homeless in Baton Rouge.
· Birthday Offering
The PW Birthday Offering dates back to 1922 and is collected from our congregation each spring to celebrate the blessings in our lives. Those blessings are in turn shared with up to five projects that are making impactful, lasting changes in the lives of women and their families. Churchwide, this offering collects over $200,000 each year. The 2016 recipients are:
• Heartland 180 in Overland Park, Kansas
Serving youth in the criminal justice system
• Direct Action and Research Training Center (DART) in Miami, Florida
For clergy and lay leaders to cease the “school-to-prison pipeline”
• Habitat for Humanity East Bay/Silicon Valley
• Building Minds in South Sudan (girls’ education), Pittsford, New York
To learn more about the history and work of the Birthday Offering, visit:
www.pcusa.org/presbyterianwomen and click on the “Mission Matters” tab.
· Fellowship of the Least Coin
The Fellowship of the Least Coin links prayer and ‘least coins’ in a very significant way as the least coin becomes the symbol of prayer for peace and reconciliation. Begun in 1956, Shanti Solomon, of India, believed that women anywhere could have a sense of being part of a worldwide family of faith as they prayed for peace and reconciliation by setting aside the least coin of their country as a symbol of that prayer. Once collected, those coins ultimately help fund special projects of evangelism, service, ecumenical solidarity, awareness building among women and relief throughout the world.
Cents-Ability is a strategy for raising awareness and funds for the fight against hunger. Congregations invite every member – of all ages – to contribute a few cents at every meal. This simple act is an expression of thanks for what we have received. In 2014, $450,000 was raised for the Presbyterian Hunger Program through CentsAbility and the General Hunger Fund. Those funds were transformed into action through programs such as Grassroots International which trains women, youth and indigenous farmers in agroecology and community leadership in Central America. PW volunteers manage the Cents-Ability collection at SCAPC during Wednesday Night Out and Sunday Fellowship every week.