These are the heroes helping Boston homeless friends make it through the night, and how you can help.

“I often ask for gifts that have nothing to do with money. There are always things one can get. What I desire is the presence of the donor, for him to touch those to whom he gives, for him to smile at them, to pay attention to them.”

Mother Teresa, No Greater Love

Sometime giving money can be the easiest way to give. The least sacrificial. The least intimate. This is not to say that everyone has piles of cash ready to be handed out. But for the majority of us, we have something we can give away. Even if it is the coins nestled between your couch cushions.

But giving your time, giving your love, that is the challenge. To hold hands with a homeless woman, to look here in the eye, and hand her a meal. In these quiet moments you hear their needs, such as the whisper asking if there are any available bras or feminine supplies.

This is what Generic Ministry is doing twice a week in Boston. I’ve learned about them from a dear friend, who goes out in the van to distribute supplies.

Generic Ministry is an all-volunteer organization that provides clothing, food, toiletries, blankets, and friendship to homeless and needy people in Boston. Two nights each week our well-stocked van delivers supplies to designated stops in the city, meeting directly with our homeless friends on the streets. Our goals are simple: to help destitute people make it through the night, and to engage people to help those in need.

I admire their goal of helping the homeless friends make it through the night. What gratitude we should all feel to not worry about making it through the night! And with that gratitude, we should give. Let’s fearlessly love our neighbors and give to those that are holding their hands and giving them respect and love and sustenance.

How you can help:

Support their GoFundMe campaign to raise $1000 to rent storage space for (and purchase) much needed supplies.

Donate through Network for Good:

  • $10 Provides a 2-week supply of water for distribution
  • $50 Keeps the van on the road for 1 month
  • $150 Purchases socks and underwear for 1 month
  • $500 Purchases insurance for the van for 6 months
  • $1,000 Pays for the rent for our garage for 4 months

Donate:

  • New underwear & socks (in packages – nothing used!) for men and women
  • Men’s cotton shirts (long sleeve t-shirts) and Hoodies XL, XXL, etc
  • Women’s bras
  • Hats, mittens, coats
  • Travel-sized toiletries

(Visit their website for more donation information.)

Daily Advent Gift: Day 4

DailyGiftDay4

“Today, the Boston Rescue Mission continues to aid the homeless and poor of Greater Boston to self-sufficiency by assisting women and men in confronting and overcoming the root causes of their homelessness. To this end, the Mission provides basic life necessities such as food and shelter as well as social service programs. The goal is to provide the homeless and poor with the support, training, and resources necessary to sustain independent living for a lifetime.”

Boston Rescue Mission secure Donation Page

I encourage you to give to your local shelter. But if you’re not able, or they don’t have a need, give to the good folks at Boston Rescue Mission.

Kids Can Give: Project Night Night

KidscangiveThe boys and I recently had the opportunity to fill bags for Project Night Night, through our local parent group. We purchased items, then filled three bags, for boys age 4-4 1/2, which will be delivered to a local homeless shelter. I struggle with how to teach them about giving because a 5 year old can only do so much in terms of service. But this was the perfect giving activity for kids. While we stuffed the bags, we talked how they would be given to children in a homeless shelter, and what that meant. By the end of it, they were asking to give away their toys to the children, toys that were much bigger than the bags could handle. These are the moments you want to put in your pocket and carry with you.

Project Night Night

What is Project Night Night?

Every child who receives one of our Night Night Packages leaves the shelter owning a book which encourages reading and family bonding, a security blanket which can be cuddled, and a stuffed animal which can become a cherished friend.  We have one objective – to deliver our Night Night Packages to every homeless child in the country who needs one.

Project Night Night

In addition to the new book, blanket and stuffed animals, we included: washcloths, toothbrushes, toothpaste, colored pencils, and spiderman activity books.

Project Night Night

(Apparently my boys inherited my need to make a silly faces in photos…)

And then we prayed for each child that would receive a bag. We prayed that God would bless, protect them and keep them healthy. We prayed that the little boys would come to know and love Jesus and know how much they are loved.

Project Night Night

You can help!

Want to fill a bag for Project Night Night? Order tote bags here.