Food Bank – 1 in 7 families take advantage of the resources provided through local food banks. 56% of those visits are elderly and single parent family homes that live on a fixed income. Providing food for families who are hungry is one of the most basic, purest ways we can show Jesus to people. People living in crisis are not willing to look to the future until their immediate needs are met. If we can help meet immediate needs, we can begin the conversation to address other issues they might be having. Our food bank hours are Wednesday from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM.
Fresh Wednesdays and Fridays – Our center and the surrounding blocks are located in a food desert, a place that lacks grocery stores and traveling by foot or bus is a means of transportation. Before our doors open on Friday, there are a group of individuals lined up to receive donated food from our Fresh Friday ministry. Whole Foods in the Green Hills area of Nashville graciously allow us to pick up pounds of food that would be thrown out due to its date or needing new inventory on shelves. The donated food includes produce, prepared meals, dairy, bakery items and sometimes meat. We call this ministry “Fresh Friday,” because a lot of the food is still good and a huge blessing to those who receive it. This ministry also gives us a chance to teach our neighbors and friends to make healthier choices when they can. Starting at 8:00 AM, a team of volunteers meet at Whole Foods to pick up the food. They bring it back to our ministry center for individuals or families to pick up from 9:00 – 11:30 AM. *We recently added Fresh Wednesdays as well, from 6:30-8 PM because we now do food recovery with Sprouts in Bellevue AND several local Aldi stores!
Meals and Snack Bags – We also assemble snack bags for local athletes at partnering schools, provide lunch and/or dinner for our neighbors several days a week and have dreams for a mobile component of this ministry in years to come. We use our food donations from local grocery stores to cook the meals! Like to cook? You are welcome to come cook a meal for ministry happening that week or prep for future meals needed.
Community Garden – Being able to grow our own produce and share it with our community has been such a blessing! If you have a green thumb and love to garden, there is a spot for you to be a part of this fruitful ministry.
SAFE AND HEALTHY COMMUNITY
Community Nights – Every night on the streets surrounding the West Nashville Dream Center, kids of all ages roam the neighborhood. When our families are sitting down to have a bite to eat, these kids are often looking for someone to talk to because many of their guardians work the night shift. They are searching for true community and aching for someone who has their back and misses them when they aren’t around. We invite groups of volunteers once a month on Wednesday night for Community Night to build healthy relationships in our neighborhood through activities on site and investment in the details of our neighbors’ lives. Food and fun is all it takes. Great activity for community groups.
Adopt-A-Block Neighborhood Check-In – Our ministry center began because of a serving opportunity at Cross Point Church called, Adopt-A-Block. Years ago when Cross Point had a location in West Nashville, volunteers went door to door checking on the surrounding neighbors. We met so many individuals and families who were under-resourced and in need of renewed hope. Through those introductions, we found our permanent home and began ministries for dreams to be inspired. Years later, we STILL go door to door on the first Saturday of the month at 10:00 AM in these West Nashville neighborhoods. People are prayed for, invited to events and tangible needs are met throughout the month.
MOMS AND KIDS
Student Ministry – What started out with 8 students on a Wednesday night, turned into a true community for up to 50 students happening on site at our ministry center AND off site. Volunteers cheer for athletes at their games. Teens are reminded that although family and friends may fail us, we have a God who never fails. Thursday nights at 6:00 PM, students 7th-12th grade are invited to hang out, share a meal and worship together.
Moms Group – Neighborhood Scout states that the Clifton Pike/40th Ave N neighborhood next to our ministry center, has more single mother households than 99.6% of the neighborhoods in the U.S. One of our goals is to support and encourage these moms on a weekly basis. Every Sunday at noon we host a moms lunch for single moms. The children of these moms are fed in a separate space and provided entertainment while their moms enjoy a quiet time with other moms who share their same triumphs and struggles. This support continues after Sunday through volunteers providing consistent relationships. Female only serving opportunity.
Sunday Kids Ministry – The heartbeat of our Kids Ministry is ensuring that every child who walks through our doors knows they are loved by our staff, volunteers, AND most of all, Jesus. Becoming a volunteer in our Sunday morning Kid’s Ministry gives you a chance to positively impact the lives of kids from birth to 6th grade who come from all walks of life. Our Kids Ministry volunteers are mentors to our children, engaging them in fun and active games, while teaching lessons about the love Jesus has for them.
Tutoring Partnership with Preston Taylor Ministries – We can proudly say that our friendship with Preston Taylor Ministries is one of the greatest blessings we have. Monday – Thursday from 4:00-6:00 PM during the school year, we are a tutoring site for 5th Grade Students w/Preston Taylor. This is one way for kids in our neighborhood to have solid support in academics and mentorship.
Summer is For Kids – In everything we do, we’re always building community. What better way to do that than during Summer break! Tuesdays-Thursdays during the months of June and July, we serve lunch to children 18 and under and provide events/activities for them following lunch. This is a great opportunity for out-of-town or out-of-state groups to serve with us or local teens and teachers who are also out of school during these months.
Men and Women in Recovery – Being next door to Safe Harbor, men’s transition program, and less than a mile from Mending Hearts, women’s recovery, and transition program, we make it a goal to support these individuals in their journey to a healthier life for themselves and their families. We offer a weekly men’s community group for the men of Safe Harbor and a monthly women’s event on the 3rd Thursday for Mending Hearts.
The Farm – Yep, we have a farm with chickens, a goat named Rocky and a pig named Charlotte. We use these animals to teach children responsibility to care for our pets. There are opportunities throughout the week for volunteers to help care for the animals as well.